Houston D.A.’s office ready seek justice for victims

Acting D.A. Kendall was serving as Chief Assistant District Attorney at the time of former D.A. George Hartwig's retirement announcement.
Acting Houston County D.A.

PERRY, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT)— Acting District Attorney for Houston County, William Kendall, took on his current role more than two months ago.

Kendall was serving as Chief Assistant District Attorney at the time of former D.A. George Hartwig’s retirement announcement. When he took over, Kendall says there were about eight people working in the office. Four of them were attorney’s with a combined 15 years of prosecution experience.

“Today with a full staff we have over 105 years of worth of prosecution experience. We certainly have a different office from what it was,” said Kendall.

Acting D.A. Kendall says he’s been fortunate to find hard working staff who actually want to be in the courtroom trying cases. He says it’s important to him that the staff works well together.

He previously worked with many of the people he hired. Some of them came back to Houston County after serving in the Macon Judicial Circuit. He says he didn’t give a definitive start date to allow people to close up cases they were working.

“Ever since then ever since everybody’s been here, we’ve hit the ground running. We’ve actually had a couple successful jury trials in the past couple months. We’re working on more right now, we’ve got motions again on Monday with specially set trials for November and that looks really good,” said Kendall.

Eric Edwards is now the Chief Assistant District Attorney for Houston County. He also plans to run for Houston County District Attorney.

Edwards left the Houston County office in 2020 to go work as an A.D.A. at the Macon Judicial Circuit. When he got the call to come back from Acting D.A. Kendall in September, he knew he had to accept the offer.

“I’ve always had aspirations to run for DA myself here. I thought I’m going to get to go back home now and so I was overwhelmed with excitement. Especially when I knew the group that we were going to put together here,” said Edwards.

Acting D.A. Kendall says there are 1,607 active pending cases in their office. 110 are marked ready for Grand Jury presentment. The average number of pending cases per Assistant D.A. is about 150, and the current active cases average is about 200 per Assistant D.A. Acting D.A. Kendall says his biggest goal is prosecuting cases to seek justice for victims in Houston County.

“That will always be the first and foremost thing that we’re going to do in this office so long as I’m here. Our job is to prosecute defendants and to serve the victims of Houston County, and that is the number one goal always,” said Kendall.

A special election date has not been set at this time. Acting D.A. Kendall says the Governor could decide to keep him in the role or appoint someone else in the meantime. There is no word on if or when that will happen.

Categories: Featured, Houston County, Local News, WMGT

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