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After 14 years as Circuit Judge for the Eighth Judicial Circuit Werner A. Moentmann will retire effective Jan. 1, 2009.
Moentmann was first elected to the position in November of 1994 and was re-elected in 2000 and 2006.
In a statement released yesterday, Moentmann said one of his fondest memories was running for the position in 1994 with other office seekers who were in their first campaign as well.
Moentmann is also active in the community and said he hopes to have more time for those activities.
“I will hopefully stay active in all of the community things that I’m involved with now and hopefully will have time for some more,” he said yesterday.
Moentmann said he plans on doing more traveling after his retirement. He said it is hard to plan vacations or do spontaneous trips, and that vacations have to be planned well ahead of time when trials are set four to six months out sometimes.
“The job is restrictive as far as that’s concerned,” he said. “That locks in the time you’re able to take off unless you know something that is planned that far ahead.”
Moentmann said some of he and his wife’s trips will be to visit children and grandchildren. The Moentmanns have children and grandchildren in Clinton, St. Louis and Louisville, Ky.
Moentmann said he has been contemplating the decision over the last couple of months with his family. He said it was a tough decision that his family left up to him.
“Everybody just left it up to me though,” he said. “They said it was my decision and they would support me in whatever decision I make.”
He said he would not completely disconnect himself from the bench. Moentmann said he would maintain a senior status that will allow him to have the opportunity to be appointed on occasion to special cases.
Moentmann said without a doubt he will miss the day-to-day activities in the courthouse. He said he would miss working with Associate Judges Kevin Walden and David Busch. He also thanked the voters of Ray County for supporting him the last 14 years.
“It’s going to be a change,” he said. “I’ve got good friends in both the courthouses.”