Judge will remain in case of former Punta Gorda officer charged with manslaughter

Judge will remain on Lee Coel case

SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - The judge in the manslaughter case of a former Punta Gorda police officer will remain in her position.

Lee Coel’s attorney filed a motion to have Judge Margaret Steinbeck removed from the case after she denied a change of venue.

Coel is charged in the shooting death of 73-year-old Mary Knowlton, which happened in 2016 during a civilian training course at the Punta Gorda Police Department.

Coel fired a gun he thought had blanks in it, instead it was loaded with bullets.

A pre-trial conference is scheduled for September.

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