2011-07-07 / Front Page

District attorney Scott McKee to seek 2nd term

SCOTT MCKEE SCOTT MCKEE Henderson County District Attorney Scott McKee announced Friday that he will seek another term. McKee plans to file for reelection in the Republican Primary in March 2012. McKee’s term, along with County Attorney Clint Davis and Sheriff Ray Nutt ends December 31, 2012. All three are seeking reelection.

McKee won the race for District Attorney by beating out long-term D.A., Donna Bennett. Bennett held the seat for 13 years before losing to McKee in the Republican primary. McKee garnered roughly 62 percent of the vote.

A year after assuming office, McKee received the Mothers Against Drunk Drivers Difference Maker of the Year Award in 2010 and was voted “Best Attorney” 2010 by the readers of the Athens Review.

“It has been the greatest honor of my life to serve the people of Henderson County in this job,” said McKee. As promised in his campaign, McKee has made crimes against children and drug prosecution a top priority. He has also teamed with other Federal and State Agencies in prosecuting and investigating crime. “I told our citizens in 2008 when I ran that I would reach out to other agencies to maximize our effectiveness in prosecuting crimes in Henderson County. They were more than happy to respond.”

Shortly after assuming office, McKee teamed with the U.S. Attorney’s office in the Project Safe Neighborhoods Program. The program is designed to combine the resources of state and federal law enforcement and prosecution so illegal possession or use of a firearm is the fastest and most dependable route to long term incarceration. The program also focuses on aggressive prosecution of drug crimes where a firearm is involved.

“I want drug dealers and violent criminals off the streets and behind bars and that is what this program is all about,” McKee said.

McKee also credits Sheriff Ray Nutt and his team, as well as the entire Henderson County Law Enforcement community for making his first term a success. “We have a great relationship with the Sheriff’s Office, County Attorney Clint Davis and other agencies. These relationships are critical to providing a synchronized fight against crime.” “This teamwork and synchronization has paid off time and time again in jury trials and the resolution of criminal cases”.

McKee, with help from the Commissioner’s court, also added investigators to the District Attorney’s staff after assuming office.

“Their role in this office and the investigations they conduct and assist in throughout the County is crucial to combating crime,” he said.

Since assuming office, McKee said District Attorney Investigators have assisted other law enforcement agencies in just about every major crime in the County as well as led numerous investigations into public official corruption, illegal gambling, white collar crime and fraud.

“If there is a major crime in our county, one of our investigators will be there to assist and serve as a liaison between the prosecutors and law enforcement,” McKee said.

Although McKee spent most of 2010 in a combat zone, he is confident that combat tour will be his last. McKee served as an Infantry Captain with the 256th Light Infantry Brigade Combat Team in Iraq. During his tour, McKee planned over 1200 combat missions throughout Iraq, participating in many of them.

Last month, at a ceremony in Fort Polk Louisiana, McKee was awarded the Bronze Star Medal for his actions and performance in a combat zone.

“Although I was glad to serve, I think its time to hang up the combat boots forever,” he said. “I would certainly consider being awarded the Bronze Star the proudest moment of my military career.”

Although technology allowed him to run the District Attorney’s office while in Iraq, McKee credits 1st Assistant Mark Hall and his staff of prosecutors, investigators and support team with continuing the mission while he was away.

“Mark and I would talk just about every work day that I was not out on a mission,” McKee said. “He is a great leader, a professional and experienced lawyer, and I am very lucky to have him on our team. Having him on the ground back home allowed me to focus on the mission and the safety of my soldiers in Iraq.”

McKee says that he will continue his tough stance on crime in his next term and continue to focus his efforts on crimes against children and punishing those that manufacture and distribute narcotics.

“We have a lot of work ahead of us, but we are up to the challenge for another 4 years,” he said.

As the County Commissioners consider the 2012 budget in the coming weeks, McKee said his budget proposal for next year allows him to strengthen his personnel while still cutting his overall budget by over $6,000.00.

McKee indicated the Legislature has cut state funding to his office as well as all D.A’s offices, but feels that his budget proposal to the Commissioners’ Court will allow him to continue the same level of services and operations without asking for more money from Henderson County Taxpayers.

McKee and wife Ashley along with their 3 boys, Stuart, Ryan and Ranger live on Cedar Creek Lake.

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