Appointed Judge Bails Out of Santa Clara Runoff

Shawna Schwarz has finally broken her silence.

Schwarz, appointed to finish a two-year term on the Santa Clara County Superior Court bench just two months after she filled papers to run for a full six-year ride in one of the two open seats, announced Wednesday that she is dropping out of the November election.

“Though there are no legal or ethical barriers to my remaining on the ballot for Superior Court Office No. 13, the time and effort I would expend running a campaign would be better spent preparing for my change in assignment from dependency court to criminal court, beginning Sept. 1,” Schwarz said in a statement.

Schwarz came in first in the June primary. She would have faced Michele McKay McCoy, a retired Santa Clara prosecutor, in a November runoff. Schwarz grabbed the frontrunner spot in the primary with a lead of just 1,213 votes, giving each judge about 34 percent of the turnout. (Edited Aug. 9: We originally had McCoy winning by a 31-vote margin, but final numbers have Schwarz up by the higher spread …).

However, since Schwarz dropped out, McCoy will now face Santa Clara prosecutor Timothy Pitsker on Nov. 7. Pitsker came in third in the June 6 primary.

— Julie O’Shea

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