The Office of the Merrimack County Attorney is the focal point for prosecution of criminal offenses in our County. In addition to prosecuting virtually all felony level offenses occurring in Merrimack County (the Attorney General’s office handles select felonies such as homicides) our attorneys prosecute misdemeanor offenses for 19 towns spread throughout our County. Adding to our caseload, above and beyond the cities and towns making up Merrimack County, we also prosecute for our State level law enforcement agencies for crimes committed within Merrimack County. Meeting our prosecution obligations requires a robust and knowledgeable staff.
Our attorney staff consists of 18 attorneys. Approximately 1/3 of the attorneys have in excess of 20 years of experience and several in that group have in excess of 25 years of prosecution experience. Attorney staff reviews criminal investigations, presents evidence to the Grand Jury, reviews and prosecutes felony cases as well as misdemeanor offenses that are appealed to the Superior Court, research and respond to motions filed with the Court, attend and conduct depositions of witnesses, argues at pretrial motion hearings, prepares witnesses for testimony at depositions, hearings and trials, presents the State’s position at sentencing hearings and in various post-conviction proceedings such as sentence review, motions for a new trial, and habeas corpus petitions. One of our attorneys is on call 24 hours a day every day of the year to assist law enforcement. Our attorney staff is able to do their job because of an experienced and dedicated support staff.
We have four Victim Witness Coordinators who focus on keeping victims and witnesses up to date on their case and ensure that victims have a voice. These individuals help to reduce the apprehension often experienced by those involved with the criminal trial process – especially children, victims of domestic violence and victims of sexual assault.
While we are not an autonomous law enforcement agency we do employ two investigators who are sworn Deputy Sheriffs. These two individuals have over 60 years of combined law enforcement experience. Our Sexual Assault Investigator assists law enforcement agencies throughout the County as requested by individual Chiefs of Police. Keeping in mind that some of the smaller towns in our county may have as few as one officer the availability of our investigators to augment a departments investigation function is a valuable tool.
Behind the scenes is our experienced administrative staff. Our core functions would grind to a halt if not for these 8 individuals. With several thousand pending and on-going charges involving hundreds of defendants the amount of documents processed through our office is daunting and each and every page needs to be evaluated for priority.
Our responsibility to our profession is more than the prosecution of criminal offenses. Attorneys from our office have shared their skills and knowledge teaching courtroom skills to members of the FBI forensic laboratory, providing testimony to our legislature on the impact of pending legislation, teaching at our state’s Police Academy and at department training events.