AJ Armstrong's new attorney appeared in court Friday to appeal murder conviction

Courtney Fischer Image
Friday, September 8, 2023
AJ Armstrong's deadline to file motion for new trial is next Friday
The 23-year-old is still in the Harris County Jail awaiting transfer to prison, where he'll serve a life sentence. His new attorney is hoping a judge will let him stay there. Here's why.

HARRIS COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- The seven-year saga isn't over yet. Three weeks after a jury found him guilty of killing his parents, A.J. Armstrong's team was in court on Friday in an attempt to overturn the murder conviction.

It's been just over three weeks since a jury decided Armstrong shot and killed his parents, Dawn and Antonio Sr., back in 2016. ABC13 reporter Courtney Fischer has covered this case since the morning of those murders.

The 23-year-old was handcuffed, fingerprinted, and put in a yellow jumpsuit, where we've seen him appear once in court because he's currently appealing his capital murder conviction.

Now, Armstrong was supposed to be in court on Friday, but he did not appear. His new attorney, however, was there and talked to Courtney about what's next for Armstrong.

Pat McCann is handling Armstrong's appeal. He even spoke with Armstrong's grandmother in court Friday morning.

McCann told ABC13 he's trying to figure out if there's grounds for a new trial. To know that, McCann has to go through the whole record, which is seven years of paperwork -- all the way back to when Armstrong was a juvenile in the system.

McCann has 30 days from Armstrong's guilty verdict to file a motion for a new trial, meaning the deadline is next Friday.

"He's a wonderfully resilient young man, so I'm hopeful I can do him some good," McCann said of Armstrong.

"How is he doing waking up in jail? It's been three weeks. A big change for him," Courtney said.

"It is. I think he misses his family. I know he misses his wife and child, so the best I can do is get busy and hopefully give him a shot at coming back to them," McCann said in reply.

Armstrong is still in the Harris County Jail awaiting transfer to prison, where he'll serve his life sentence. But, McCann said he's going to ask the court to keep Armstrong there for now because he needs Armstrong's help to interpret a lot of the record, and it's easier to do that with Armstrong physically there.

That decision will be up to a judge, though.

ABC13 should know by next week whether or not that motion for a new trial will be filed.

For complete coverage of the AJ Armstrong case, follow Courtney Fischer on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


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