Stanislaus County could get its first contested election for a judgeship in eight years.
Judge Donald Shaver did not take out papers to run for re-election this June by Wednesday's deadline. That means that people who want his seat have until Tuesday to begin the process at the Stanislaus County clerk-recorder's office.
Superior Court Commissioner Nancy William-sen has pulled papers to run for the seat.
It's rare for someone to challenge a sitting judge in an election because incumbents have a steep advantage in name recognition.
The last competitive race in Stanislaus County was in 2002. Seven candidates faced off in a March primary that year for a seat vacated by the retirement of Judge Edward Lacy Jr.
Then-Deputy District Attorneys Linda McFadden and Alan Cassidy emerged from that field, with McFadden defeating Cassidy on Election Day.
Court Administrator Mike Tozzi confirmed that Shaver, 60, did not plan to run for his seat. County Clerk Lee Lundrigan said the filing deadline was extended because the incumbent chose not to run.
Shaver could not be reached for comment Wednesday night.
He was appointed to the court in 1990 after working as a prosecutor in the district attorney's office for 13 years. Shaver left the bench in Stanislaus County for four months in 2006, when he served in the International Criminal Court in The Hague on a temporary assignment.