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Criminal Justice Commission announces four candidates for Connecticut Chief State's Attorney

The Criminal Justice Commission announced Tuesday that it would conduct public interviews of four candidates for chief state's attorney at the Legislative Office Building in Hartford on Jan. 30.

The four candidates are:

  • Richard J. Colangelo, Jr., who has served as state's attorney for the Judicial District of Stamford/Norwalk since July 2015.
  • Kevin D. Lawlor, who has served as deputy chief state's attorney for Operations since July 2018 after 12 years as state's attorney for the Judicial District of Ansonia/Milford.
  • Erik T. Lohr, associate attorney general for legal counsel in the Office of the Attorney General since January 2019, and who began his legal career as a prosecutor in the Office of the Chief State's Attorney.
  • Maureen T. Platt, who has served as state's attorney for the Judicial District of Waterbury since June 2001.

Associate Supreme Court Justice Andrew J. McDonald, chairman of the Criminal Justice Commission, said in a press release that the commission will conduct the interviews at a public meeting scheduled for 9 a.m. on Thursday, January 30, 2020, at the Legislative Office Building in Hartford. The commission anticipates acting on the appointment later the same day.

The chief state's attorney is the chief law enforcement officer for the State of Connecticut and administrative head of the Division of Criminal Justice, which includes the Office of the Chief State's Attorney and the state's attorneys offices for the 13 Judicial Districts.

The new chief state's attorney will serve the remainder of the 5-year term to which Kevin T. Kane was appointed in 2016. Kane retired December 1, 2019, after 47 years as a prosecutor, the last 13 as chief state's attorney.

The Criminal Justice Commission is responsible for the appointment of all state prosecutors in Connecticut. In addition to Justice McDonald,  its membership includes Superior Court Judge Melanie L. Cradle, attorneys Robert M. Berke, Reginald Dwayne Betts, Scott J. Murphy and Moy N. Ogilvie.

John J. Russotto, in his capacity as acting Chief State's Attorney, also is a member of the commission, however, the chief state's attorney by law does not participate in the appointment of the chief state's attorney or deputy chief state's attorneys. Russotto, the deputy chief state's attorney for personnel, finance and administration, was not a candidate for permanent appointment as chief state's attorney.


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