DA’s second-in-command named new Pharr municipal court judge 

Juan L. Villescas (Courtesy: Hidalgo County)

Hidalgo County’s first assistant district attorney left his post to serve the citizens of Pharr, county officials announced in a news release Wednesday.

First Assistant District Attorney Juan L. Villescas, who has worked multiple stints at the Hidalgo County Criminal District Attorney’s Office, was named the new Pharr municipal court judge, county officials said.

Villescas, a native of San Juan, was hired six years ago by Hidalgo County Criminal District Attorney Ricardo Rodriguez Jr. when he first took office in 2015. Villescas assisted in overseeing the daily operations of the 12 divisions of the DA’s office, including the High Intensity Drug Task Force.

“When I took office in 2015, Juan was one of the first individuals I hired,” Rodriguez said in a news release. “I knew with his vast experience, knowledge of the law and great integrity, he would be a vital asset to this office. It has truly been an honor and blessing to work beside him all these years.”

The 1979 PSJA High School graduate earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from the  University of Texas – Pan American in 1983. He followed that with his ​​Juris Doctorate from Texas Southern University in 1986.

After receiving his law license, Villescas began serving as an assistant district attorney with Hidalgo County from 1986 to 1988. He then started his own private practice and went to work for the Texas Attorney General’s Office in Houston in 1997. He rejoined the Hidalgo County District Attorney’s Office from 2001 to 2008, and in 2015 he left to work for the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Texas in McAllen.

Villescas is a member of the Pharr Police Advisory Board and has served on the Diocese of Brownsville Blue Mass Committee. He has also been a part-time lecturer/adjunct professor for the Department of Criminal Justice at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley since 2014.

“Although it pains me to see him go, I congratulate him on his new appointment and wish him continued success,” Rodriguez said. “I know he will do an outstanding job for the residents in Pharr.”