Augusta Judicial Circuit District Lawyer Natalie Paine and Democratic challenger Jared Williams talked about their platforms and strategies at a discussion board held by the Columbia County Chamber of Commerce at the Columbia County Library in Evans on Wednesday evening.
Both of those candidates begun their authorized occupations at the district attorney’s place of work, Paine in 2009 and Williams in 2013. Paine remained a prosecutor with more than 50 trials right before replacing now-Excellent Courtroom Choose Ashley Wright as district legal professional in 2017. Williams left the district attorney’s workplace right after two several years and about 20 trials to stay and operate in Spain. Following his 2017 return, he commenced legal defense perform with the Hawk Business.
Answers beneath have been condensed for house.
Q: What does a honest and just court docket program appear like to you?
Williams: One particular exactly where everyone is taken care of the way they would want to be treated that the laws utilize similarly, no make any difference what you seem like, how considerably funds you have in your pocket, or what facet of the neighborhood you come from.
Paine: Our office does not appear at the color of somebody’s skin or where by they arrived from. We are fascinated in looking for justice for our victims and creating guaranteed that the law is used relatively.
Q: What plans and procedures would you like to see as DA to lessen crime and to maximize general public safety?
Paine: In phrases of cutting down crime, I feel our business office has really done an exemplary occupation of that … in phrases of programs … we are constrained by a pandemic economic disaster, but there is nothing at all that we would be presently accomplishing that I would adjust.
Williams: Preserving young ones in school rooms, not courtrooms … to start with-time offenders recidivate at a superior level, they re-offend, and we need to have to make positive that they never do that … At last, we require to make certain that, from a legislation and buy standpoint, we are performing every little thing we can to overcome violent crime.
Q: What do you consider is the most helpful way to deal with drug offenders?
Williams: There are two classes … if you are a drug abuser … you can not lock up dependancy, you have to take care of it … if you are peddling poison to our children or cooking methamphetamine around our school, we have a distinctive program for you.
Paine: There is a distinction in between somebody who’s bought a drug issue and who is just fascinated in working medication … those people are people today that need to have to go to jail … just one of the matters Augusta is considerably missing in is an reasonably priced, very long-phrase residential cure.
Q: What is your point of view on juvenile criminal offense and its influence on our court docket method?
Paine: We’re carrying out a good position with juveniles. The biggest situation that I see … tends to be challenges that happen well ahead of they’re entering the juvenile court method, such as a number of unexcused absences … People are factors that we have got to get started keeping the board of instruction and DFCS accountable for.
Williams: I really don’t think that we can punt and put the responsibility on other businesses. We require to talk about what we in the district attorney’s office can do much better … we have youngsters that arrive as a result of that technique, and we need to have to make sure that their 1st time in there is their previous time.
Q: How would you manage a lethal use of drive involving legislation enforcement?
Williams: There’s been some narrative that I really don’t aid legislation enforcement … I do … We have to function alongside one another … We have to have to be clear, we require to comply with the legislation, we will need to take politics out of it, we have to have to get to the truth of the make a difference.
Paine: I go to every single scene in which there is fatal power employed … If you were being to request anyone in the law enforcement neighborhood … they would unequivocally inform you that, if they were being to crack the regulation, then they thoroughly hope me to appear following them.
To check out the total movie of the district lawyer discussion board, go to the “videos” area of The Augusta Chronicle’s Facebook webpage.