Federal judge kills himself during standoff with police in Miami-Dade

Among judge's hostages was 13-year-old girl, police say

By Peter Burke - Local10.com Managing Editor, Madeleine Wright - Reporter, Carlos Suarez - Anchor/Reporter, Andrea Torres - Digital Reporter/Producer

MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. - A SWAT standoff ended Friday morning after a troubled administrative law judge, who barricaded himself inside a southwest Miami-Dade County home while holding three relatives hostage, killed himself, according to the Miami-Dade Police Department.

Miami-Dade Detective Alvaro Zabaleta identified the man on Friday afternoon as Judge Timothy Maher, who was arrested Aug. 14 after allegedly threatening his ex-girlfriend with a gun in front of their 2-year-old son at his El Portal home.

Zabaleta identified the hostages as 49-year-olds Ana and Jose Rodriguez and their 13-year-old daughter. Officers said they were not injured. 

Miami-Dade police and SWAT officers were called to the home near Southwest 113th Passage and Southwest 240th Street late Thursday night.

A negotiator was using a megaphone to communicate with Maher. 

"We want a peaceful end to this," the negotiator said.

Officers said Maher eventually stopped communicating with negotiators. Detective Chris Thomas said that after the hours-long standoff, police officers heard a gunshot and entered the home and found him dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. 

The teenage girl and her parents ran out of the home. 

A Miami Shores Police Department report shows that Maher was also involved in a recent road rage incident. According to the report, Maher followed another driver to his home June 30, where he cussed him out and called him a racial slur.

Police were also called to the home and the judge claimed the other driver pulled out a gun on him. But a search of the man's car showed that there was no gun in the vehicle, authorities said. Police said Maher told an officer at the scene that he was a federal judge and said there was cause for the officer to search the other man's house.

The officer called the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office and was told there was no cause for a search, the report stated. No arrests were made in that incident. 

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