RALEIGH COUNTY, WV (WOAY) – On Monday Benjamin Hatfield was sworn in as Raleigh County’s new prosecuting attorney.
Hatfield was elected in November over the incumbent Kristen Keller with 17,456 votes. Hatfield has been an attorney for nearly a decade and looks to bring that experience along with his youthful energy to Raleigh County.
“I’ve been an attorney for almost a decade, but I’m still probably one of the younger elected prosecutors in the state,” said Raleigh County Prosecuting Attorney Benjamin Hatfield “I’m thirty-five and I’m looking to take the decade of experience that I have married with some youthful energy and inject some new ideas into not only this office, but into the criminal justice system as a whole.”
While in office Hatfield looks to cut the current circuit court docket size in half in order to allow the courts to try more serious cases without the current burdens. He also plans to take the remedial measures in justice system, such as drug court, and interject them into lower level offenses to get people the help they need before it’s too late. Additionally, Hatfield looks to bring a family treatment program to Raleigh County to provide aftercare for people who have gone through the court system.
“They are successful while they are engaging in the treatment, it’s the aftercare that is lacking,” said Hatfield. “Judge Thompson’s family treatment court kind of sets them up for that aftercare. Now that you’ve graduated through the court system so what then and his treatment court kind of answers those questions. I’m looking at potentially bringing that here to Raleigh County so we can get a handle on some of the people that are still reachable.”
Hatfield also said he is excited to get started and wants to ensure citizens he will be working to keep them safe.