Girlfriend, judge accused of assault had troubled relationship, friend says

Girlfriend, judge accused of assault had troubled relationship, friend says

Credit: WFAA

Dallas County Judge Carlos Cortez

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by BRETT SHIPP

WFAA

Posted on January 10, 2014 at 11:15 PM

DALLAS — New details are surfacing about the alleged assault committed by Dallas County District Judge Carlos Cortez, whose girlfriend told police he choked and dragged her to his 20th-story balcony.
 
But a separate incident, recounted by a local attorney who witnessed it, may place the relationship between Cortez and the girlfriend in a new light.
 
The new information about the Dec. 28 altercation are contained in a Dallas Police Department search warrant affidavit, which detectives used two day ago to take crime scene photographs inside Cortez’s unit at the La Tour Condominiums in the 3000 block of McKinney Avenue in Uptown.
 
Cortez is accused of assaulting his 26-year-old girlfriend after a night of drinking and arguing.
 
According to the search warrant affidavit, Cortez "grabbed her by the top of her hair and began swinging her head from side to side."
 
“Suspect put both of his hands around her neck and started squeezing her throat, impeding her breath and normal blood flow,” the police affidavit states.
 
Cortez then allegedly dragged her out onto his 20th story balcony and backed her up to the railing.
 
According to the affidavit, the “suspect began pushing complainant further backwards until her feet were no longer touching the floor of the balcony.”
 
Cortez, in court filings, says that he tried to keep the woman from jumping off the railing.
 
The police affidavit says Cortez and the woman had been dating for 13 months. Sources told WFAA it was a rocky relationship.
 
Dallas Attorney Darrell Silvera said in an interview that he witnessed an incident on the night of Nov. 11. He said he had dropped off an envelope for Cortez in his front lobby when he says he saw a young woman stumble out of the elevator.
 
She “started making statements about how she hates Judge Cortez, that she's going to ruin him,” Silvera said. “She's going to do whatever she can do to make sure he's no longer a judge.”
 
Silvera said when Cortez arrived in the lobby, his girlfriend ran out onto a busy McKinney Avenue.
 
"Next thing you know, she darts out onto McKinney, right in the middle of traffic," Silvera said. "Judge Cortez chases after her and basically saves her life."
 
Silvera said he and Cortez spent the next two hours trying to calm the woman down.
 
“I asked him please call 911 because something is going to happen,” Silvera said. “She's going to hurt herself, or she's going to kill herself or something's going to happen.”
 
Silvera said when police finally arrived they allowed her to take a cab home.
 
Neither Cortez nor the girlfriend’s attorney can comment on the incidents. A judge has place a gag order on the case.
 
Meanwhile, Cortez is out of jail on bond, and back on the bench. The case has yet to be filed with the Dallas County District Attorney for prosecution.

Email bshipp@wfaa.com
 

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