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AJ Armstrong trial: Opening statements set to begin Monday after delay

The first two trials for Antonio “AJ” Armstrong Jr., ended in hung juries. He's accused of killing his parents while they slept in their Bellaire-area home in 2016.

KHOU 11 Staff, Michelle Homer, Adam Bennett

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Published: 2:33 PM CDT June 4, 2023
Updated: 10:18 PM CDT June 11, 2023

The third capital murder trial for Antonio "AJ" Armstrong Jr. is expected to get underway Monday morning after a judge delayed it by a week last Monday. Armstrong is accused of killing his sleeping parents in their Bellaire-area home of southwest Houston in 2016 when he was 16 years old. 

Minutes before attorneys were set to begin opening statements last Monday, Judge Kelli Johnson announced the case would be reset to June 12, at 10:30 a.m. She cited an issue "outside the court's control."

Armstrong and several family members who are supporting him then left the courtroom.

The judge has issued a gag order in the case so neither side could tell us what came up at the last minute. 

Johnson also barred anyone inside the courtroom from recording video, taking photos or using cell phones or laptops. That means you won't see video or photos from inside the courtroom during our coverage of the trial. Opening statements and closing arguments also won't be streamed live this time around.

Armstrong's first two trials, in 2019 and again last October, ended in mistrials because jurors couldn't agree on a verdict. In criminal trials, all twelve jurors must agree.

If convicted this time around, Armstrong would face a sentence of life in prison and would be eligible for parole after 40 years.

Below is the background of the case and reports from the first two mistrials.

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