The judge who presided over the child abuse trial involving pop star Michael Jackson in Santa Maria is stepping down.
Judge Rodney Melville has kept a low profile since the case. He says he has turned down all offers to write a book or appear on TV talk shows.
Melville has been on the bench since he was appointed in 1987. (see VIDEO )
His last day is today (Oct 11).
During these 18 years on the bench Judge Melville has experienced every type of litigation.
Judge Melville formerly served three terms as the Presiding Judge for the Superior Court while simultaneously serving as the Supervising Judge of the Civil Division.
Melville plans to spend his retirement traveling with his wife, riding horses and visiting with his three grandchildren.
Due to an overload of cases in Riverside County, Judge Melville says he will help out occasionally there, by hearing some cases.
That assignment will begin later this month.
Senior Reporter John Palminteri has our story