News for Public Officials

Famous People from Floyd County, Texas.

Michelle Araujo

Born December 10, 1973, Michelle Araujo served as Justice of the Peace in Floyd County and Lockney City Judge from 1999 to 2008. She helped with the Jr. High track meets and coached little dribblers. She and her husband, Romeo Araujo owned a liquor store in neighboring Briscoe County. Everything seemed to be going well for the young JP until March 2007.

Judge Araujo, 33, was arrested Saturday, March 10 2007, for shooting her husband, multiple times in the stomach at the Araujo home seven miles north of Lockney. She was brought before Judge Penny Golightly at approximately 3:15 p.m. and charged with Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon. Charges of attempted murder were added later.
 

In January, 2008  Araujo pleaded guilty to aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and received a $5000 fine and ten years probation. The attempted murder charge was dropped and she agreed to vacate her Floyd County JP position.

 

The guilty plea didn't end the former judge's problems with the law. The State Commission on Judicial Conduct had previously suspended her with pay in April 2007 after a misdemeanor charge of official oppression was lodged against her. The charge alleged Judge Araujo threatened to use the authority of her office to ruin the quality of a citizen's life.


The Texas Alcohol Beverage Commission filed a complaint, March 16, against Michelle Araujo for selling alcohol to a minor from a liquor store (Bruskie's Liquor) the judge and her husband own in nearby Briscoe County. The sale of alcohol is prohibited in Floyd County. Floyd County was one of 46 prohibition or entirely dry counties in the state of Texas.

In August of 2014 Araujo was once again in the news when she was relieved of her duties as manager of the Lockney Housing Authority after she was allegedly involved in a fist fight with former employee Marilyn Walker in July of that year. As a result, The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development accused the Lockney Housing Authority of committing violations when hiring the unqualified  and convicted criminal  judge . “Specifically, the Authority … allowed a conflict-of-interest by hiring the board chairman’s daughter as its director,” HUD said.

 

An inspector general’s report said Michelle Araujo, had “significantly mismanaged” operations, exhausting public housing funds. The report noted her inability to gain access to secure computer systems essential in the job because of her criminal history.

 

On September 5, 2017 Michelle Araujo appealed the decision to revoke her probation by the 110th District Court, Floyd County. The appeals court overruled Araujo's appeal and affirmed the trial court's judgment.

Araujo is currently in the Crain Prison Unit in Gatesville, Texas. She is projected to be released in June 07, 2030 but could be released on parole as early as July 07, 2021.

 

Sources:

Castro dealing with scandal-laden HUD

Texas Department of Criminal Justice Offender Information Details

Michelle Araujo v. The State of Texas Appeal

Resources:

Early Life in Texas County by County

Books about Texas People and Places

True Stories of Amazing People and Places in Texas (Facebook)

Texas History in the 19th Century (Amazon)

Vintage Texas Photos (eBay)

Floyd County (Texas State Historical Association)

Lockney . . . Facebook

 

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