The top law enforcement officer in Marshall, Bedford, Lincoln and Moore counties has announced that he will resign effective July 31.
District Attorney Chuck Crawford of Lincoln County made the unexpected announcement Thursday morning, saying he was "physically and emotionally drained."
Crawford was unopposed when he was elected in 2006 to succeed Mike McCown who now practices law from his office in Fayetteville. District attorneys, like juvenile, sessions, probate and circuit court judges, and public defenders are elected to eight-year terms. Crawford was the Lincoln County juvenile, sessions and probate court judge in Lincoln County before he became the prosecutor.
"I have advised Gov. Haslam of my intentions to resign as District Attorney for the 17th Judicial District," Crawford said in a widely distributed prepared statement.
"My decision is based on my belief that the people of this District have the right to a District Attorney who is able to give 100 percent of himself to the demands of the office," Crawford said.
'Over the past several years, I have been involved in the prosecution of numerous tough cases. As a result, I find myself physically and emotionally drained, and I am not convinced that I am able to give the citizens of this district the uncompromised enthusiasm they deserve during the remaining two years of my term. Rather than risk that, I have chosen to resign.
"It has been a tremendous honor to serve the people of Lincoln, Bedford, Marshall and Moore counties as district attorney. I am proud of the service my staff and I have provided over the last several years.
"I want to take this opportunity to thank all of the people who demonstrated faith in my abilities by electing me. I also want to thank my staff who have worked tirelessly in the pursuit of justice. And, most of all, I want to thank my wife and family, who have been there for me on every step of this journey."