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Judges begin search for next Ingham County prosecutor

Ingham County Prosecutor Carol Siemon announced plans earlier this month to retire at the end of the year. Judges with the 30th circuit court will decide her successor.

Judges with the 30th Circuit Court are in the process of deciding who will be the next Ingham County prosecuting attorney. That’s after current Prosecutor Carol Siemon announced plans to retire at the end of the year.

The Ingham County prosecutor oversees cases involving criminal law violations as well as family support and mental health issues.

Chief Circuit Judge Joyce Draganchuk says she is accepting applications for the next county prosecutor until Dec. 14. After that, circuit court judges will meet and vote on who should serve as the prosecuting attorney.

Draganchuk says each judge has their own criteria for picking the county prosecutor.

“Given the nature of that office, I would be looking for someone who has both experience in criminal law, and also experience in administering or running a large office of attorneys like that,” Draganchuk said.

The last time judges appointed a prosecuting attorney for the county was in 2016, when former Ingham County Prosecutor Stuart Dunnings III resigned and faced criminal charges relating to prostitution. Judges appointed now-Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to serve the remaining six months of Dunnings' term, and voters elected Siemon to the position in that year's election.

Draganchuk says she expects the judges will evaluate the applicants and vote on their pick a week or two after the deadline. She adds the difficulty of the decision will depend on how many people apply.

“I think I have a pretty clear idea of who I would be the type of person I would be looking for," Draganchuk said. "But yeah, if we have a lot of qualified applicants, it could be a difficult choice.”

The judge's pick will serve until 2024. The next county prosecutor will be elected during that year's presidential election.

Arjun Thakkar is WKAR's politics and civics reporter.
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