New judge assigned to Mark Whitaker case

Mark Whitaker (Photo: Portsmouth Police Department)

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — A new judge has been assigned to hear the case of indicted Portsmouth city councilman Mark Whitaker.

Court documents filed May 5 show Judge William C. Andrews III has been designated chief justice in the case.

The move comes a week after three Portsmouth judges asked to be recused from the case.

Johnny Morrison, Kenneth Melvin and Chief Judge William Moore said in a jointing filing that it would have been improper for them to hear the case, because Whitaker is well-known to them and a city councilman.

Trial date set for indicted Portsmouth councilman

The councilman was indicted in April on 20 felony charges, including identity fraud and forgery.

Court documents allege Whitaker the name of a 61-year-old woman on seven of her own checks and then tried to pass them.

A trial is scheduled to start Nov. 13.