Hearing will decide if judge will stay on Aaron Dean’s murder trial for Atatiana Jefferson

Attorneys for a former Fort Worth police officer charged with murder went to court asking for a new judge to be assigned to the case.

They claim the state district court judge is biased against them and their client Aaron Dean. 

Dean is charged with murder for the 2019 shooting death of Atatiana Jefferson. 

Dean’s attorneys called 11 witnesses to testify. All of those witnesses say they felt Judge David Hagerman has shown an unfair bias toward Dean’s defense team. 

With a different judge on the bench to decide the matter, no cameras were allowed in court. 

Dean’s attorney called several criminal defense attorneys as witnesses. Some had observed Judge Hagerman at a June 3 pretrial hearing on scheduling conflicts.

The defense asked attorney Harmony Shchuerman: "What did you observe about the interaction between Judge Hagerman and myself?"

"The judge seemed angry with you," he said.

The defense asked: "How was his anger expressed?"

"In many ways, verbally and visually. You could just tell he was very angry," Shchuerman said. "And I felt he was being disrespectful toward the defense."

Dean has been out on bond since he was arrested for the murder of 28-year-old Atatiana Jefferson in October 2019. 

On Thursday, there was a show of community support outside the courthouse and inside.

Some who wore t-shirts with Jefferson’s name and image were told to turn them inside out to be allowed in court. It triggered frustration. 

The defense wrapped its argument for the day. The state put on its case without witnesses. 

Now, the visiting judge has taken the evidence under advisement. She says she will rule on this matter perhaps by next week.