Guam – The criminal case against sitting Lt. Governor Ray Tenorio has been assigned to Superior Court Judge Vernon Perez following the recusals of five other judges.
Last week, Judges Anita Sukola and Arthur Barcinas disqualified themselves from the case, citing personal and professional relationships with Tenorio, who is actively campaigning for governor with running mate Tony Ada.
This week, three more judges filed recusals in Tenorio’s case.
Judge Michael Bordallo, the brother of former Chief of Police Fred Bordallo who lost a bid in the primary election as lt. governor, says as an immediate family member of Tenorio’s political opponent, he impartiality could be questioned. In addition, Fred Bordallo is actively campaigning for Democratic nominee for governor Lou Leon Guerrero and her running mate Josh Tenorio.
Judge Maria Cenzon, as expected, disqualified herself as she was appointed to the bench under the Calvo-Tenorio administration and served as the administration’s legal counsel for a couple of years. She also says she is a close friend of Tenorio dating back to 1996 or earlier.
Judge Alberto Lamorena cited his relationship to Department of Corrections Director Tony Lamorena, who was appointed by the Calvo-Tenorio Administration, as the basis for his recusal.
Tenorio’s arraignment hearing is still scheduled for October 3 at 2 p.m. before Magistrate Judge Jonathan Quan. Tenorio is facing charges of reckless conduct, official misconduct and obstructing government functions, all as misdemeanors in the July 2017 gun-grabbing incident in which the lt. governor grabbed the firearm of an on-duty police officer and allegedly pointed the weapon the officer.
Tenorio has maintained his innocence but admits he did grab Officer CJ Cruz’s firearm because the officer’s holster was loose and he wanted to “teach him a lesson.”