WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — Despite an initial objection from the prosecution, Anthony Patterson’s upcoming trial will be moving outside of Wichita County after a motion to change the venue was granted.

On Thursday, August 24, 2023, an order signed by 78th District Court Judge Meredith Kennedy to change the venue of Patterson’s pending trial for charges of human trafficking and child sex crimes was filed with the Wichita County District Clerk.

After several months of uncertainty, the venue change is now official, and another trial is making the expensive move to Tarrant County, the third such trial of 2023 to be relocated to Fort Worth.

According to officials with the 78th District Court, the trial remains specially set to begin on October 30, 2023.

Patterson’s defense team filed the 200-page motion to change the venue of the trial on July 19, 2023, claiming their client has been subjected to pervasive, prejudicial, and inflammatory publicity and recommending the trial be moved to Collin County.

Prosecutors maintained news stories on the case were objective and fair and the number of stories broadcast or published was not so extensive to make seating a jury of impartial jurors here impossible. 

The state moved that the judge allow the jury selection process to proceed in Wichita County to show a fair and impartial jury can be seated.

The signed change of venue order states that both the prosecution and the defense agreed to the venue change for the trial, and they agreed to keep Judge Kennedy as the presiding judge over this case.

This makes the third local trial to be moved to Tarrant County in 2023 after James Staley’s capital murder trial was held in Fort Worth in March 2023, and Amber McDaniel’s punishment trial is set to begin in Fort Worth on Monday, September 11, 2023, both in connection to the death of McDaniel’s son, Wilder.

This is a developing story. Stick with Texoma’s Homepage for updates as more information becomes available. All individuals charged with a crime are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.