Died. John Paul Barnich, 63, Texas’ first openly gay city court judge, died February 2 from diabetes-related complications. Appointed to the court by Mayor Lee Brown in 1999, Barnich served on the bench until October 2007 when he resigned due to failing health, according to the Houston Chronicle. Founder of the Bar Association for Human Rights and frequent defender of gay rights and HIV-related cases, Barnich was also on the board, for four years as its chairman, of the AIDS Foundation Houston.
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