Wallace takes helm of DA’s office
by Erin Dentmon
edentmon@cherokeetribune.com
December 23, 2012 12:24 AM | 2283 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
District Attorney Shannon Wallace is accompanied by her husband, Kyle, and their two children, Kyleigh, 8, and Brayden, 5, during Friday’s swearing-in ceremony by Superior Court Judge Frank Mills.<br>Staff/Todd Hull
District Attorney Shannon Wallace is accompanied by her husband, Kyle, and their two children, Kyleigh, 8, and Brayden, 5, during Friday’s swearing-in ceremony by Superior Court Judge Frank Mills.
Staff/Todd Hull
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CANTON — Shannon Wallace says she always knew she wanted to be a prosecutor. Come Jan. 1, she’ll lead an entire office of prosecutors as she becomes District Attorney for the Blue Ridge Judicial Circuit.

Wallace was sworn in to office Friday.

Wallace has been with the Blue Ride circuit since 2008. She first worked in a district attorney’s office her senior year of college as an intern in the Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit.

She continued working in the Ocmulgee circuit during law school, eventually trying cases under the supervision of attorneys in the office.

“I got a lot of prosecuting experience before I became a prosecutor,” she said.

After joining the Ocmulgee DA’s office full time, Wallace was the circuit’s first juvenile prosecutor and then moved into Superior Court.

“I have really had all kinds of cases,” she said. Wallace joined the Blue Ridge circuit in 2008 as chief assistant DA under Garry Moss, who is retiring at the end of this year.

Wallace said drug offenses and crimes against children are the most common crimes she’s seen in the Blue Ridge circuit.

“With the economy, we’ve had a lot of property crimes, but a lot of property crimes are related to drugs, too,” she said.

A felony drug court will start early in the year. The DA’s office decides who is eligible to be offered drug court.

“Hopefully, that will help out in some of those cases where someone really has an addiction,” Wallace said.

Given her experience in the DA’s office, Wallace said moving into the DA’s position should be “an easy transition.”

“The last several months, Garry has given me a lot of the authority I’ll have as the DA, so I have an advantage,” she said.

Wallace said she hopes to remain an active, hands-on district attorney who spends time in the courtroom.

“I intend on keeping murders. Child crimes are my passion, so it’s going to be hard for me to be pulled away,” she said.

Wallace said her passion is seeking justice for people and dealing with people when bad things have happened to them.

“The ability to help them by using my skills, having them at the end of the day say ‘thank you’ is what keeps me moving along,” she said.

Fred Bright, the prosecutor Wallace worked for in the Ocmulgee circuit, spoke at her swearing-in ceremony.

“I feel like a proud father,” he said. “She will do you proud. She will make an excellent district attorney.”

Wallace thanked her family and friends, as well as Bright and Moss.

“Garry, you have done so much for me,” she said. “Garry is a wonderful prosecutor. I do have big shoes to fill.”
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