Municipal Court Judge Michael T. Daugherty Passes Away at 53

“Caring” Judge Mike dies unexpectedly

WILMINGTON — Brian Shidaker, Wilmington City Safety Director and Brian Kratzer, Chief Baliff, announced that Judge Michael T. Daugherty, died at his residence early Thursday morning. Judge Daugherty has served as Municipal Court Judge since July 2015. Shidaker and Kratzer said “Judge Daugherty served faithfully with great professionalism and dedication when he was first appointed and then after being elected. He truly viewed his job as a mission to help others.”

Judge Daugherty was appointed to his role by Governor John Kasich and assumed office on July 7, 2015. He was subsequently elected that fall, being sworn in January 1, 2016. Daugherty graduated from Wilmington College, earning his Juris Doctorate from University of Dayton.

Brian Kratzer, longtime friend and Chief Bailiff shared that Judge Mike focused on delivering fair and equal justice, but he cared more about helping those who appeared before him.  “His heart was always focused on making people and our City better” added Kratzer.

Sarah Avey, Municipal Court Deputy Clerk mentioned that Judge Daugherty was a great combination of office jokester and city servant. “Judge Mike loved playing Santa Claus – seeing the children happy just made his day” said Avey.

Mayor John Stanforth said “Judge Mike will be difficult to replace. He was a good and decent man who always placed those he worked with first as well as those he served.”

Judge Daugherty is survived by his wife Wendy and family. Service details are to be determined.

The Wilmington City Courts will be closed until further notice. Any questions can be directed to Brian Kratzer at or Sarah Avey at Check the court’s website for further details.

Comments are closed.