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Suspect’s Body Found After Weeklong Manhunt



Clear Facts

  • Pedro Argote, the suspect in the murder of Maryland Judge Andrew Wilkinson, was found dead in a Pennsylvania wooded area.
  • Argote allegedly murdered Judge Wilkinson shortly after the judge ruled against him in a divorce hearing.
  • Argote had a troubling history of domestic violence, with his daughter testifying about his abusive behaviors.

Law enforcement officers have closed a weeklong manhunt, discovering the lifeless body of Pedro Argote, 49.

Argote, previously labeled “armed and dangerous,” was the primary suspect in the chilling murder of Maryland Judge Andrew Wilkinson.

Washington County police have reported the findings, noting, “The deceased was located in a heavily wooded area between Clear Spring Road and Bottom Road approximately one mile northwest of where the suspect vehicle was found.”

The tragic sequence started when Argote allegedly executed Judge Wilkinson in cold blood at his west Maryland residence’s driveway, a mere week prior.

The motive? Wilkinson, an official in the Washington County Circuit Court, had been overseeing a divorce proceeding involving Argote.

Washington County Sherriff Brian Albert was clear in his briefings. He stated, “This was a targeted attack on Judge Wilkinson. We have identified Pedro Argote, 49, of Frederick, Maryland, as a suspect in this case. Argote is not in custody and is considered armed and dangerous.”

Argote’s dissatisfaction seemingly stemmed from a ruling on the very day of Judge Wilkinson’s death. The judge decreed that Argote would be barred from contacting or visiting his wife and their four children – a ruling delivered in Argote’s absence. At the time of the harrowing incident, the judge’s family was inside the residence.


Adding to the heap of troubles for Argote, the judge ruled that he must steer clear of the family property, granting the wife “sole use and possession of the family home.” To top it off, Argote was slapped with a monthly child support fee of $1,120.

The backdrop to this tragic tale was painted with episodes of domestic violence. Records showed Argote’s repeated aggressive tendencies, including troubling actions against his children. As per reports, he assaulted his eldest daughter with a belt and shockingly muzzled his infant with a towel.

Argote’s daughter, showing immense bravery, testified about the ordeals she underwent, expressing, “The reason I worked up the courage to testify was so that my siblings wouldn’t have to go through the mental torment that I currently have.”

His wife, Eugenia, painted a picture of Argote as controlling and menacing, having once secured a domestic violence protection order against him. Though it was later annulled to allow a “nesting agreement” for living arrangements, it was clear that the tensions ran deep.

In what now appears as a haunting premonition, Judge Wilkinson, during the divorce proceedings, labeled Argote’s actions as “shocking,” pointing out, “I think he is abusive in multiple ways.”

The grim aftermath unfolded just hours after these very words.

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