PHOENIX — The Arizona Supreme Court has a new vice chief justice.
Chief Justice Scott Bales says the seven-member court Wednesday elected Justice Robert Brutinel as vice chief justice following Justice John Pelander’s Oct. 13 resignation as vice chief justice.
Bales says Brutinel will fill the unexpected portion of Pelander’s five-year term that began in mid-2014.
Brutinel is a former Yavapai County Superior Court judge. Then-Gov- Jan Brewer appointed him a justice in 2010.
Pelander is remaining on the court as a justice.
He said in a statement released Friday by the court that if he succeeded Bales as chief justice in 2019, he would face retirement before finishing a full five-year term as chief justice.
Pelander was a Court of Appeals judge when Brewer appointed him a justice in 2009.