Bradshaw hopes for ‘more passion’ in DA job

Published 10:38 pm Monday, May 10, 2010

Coffee County defense attorney Gary Bradshaw boasts of a high success record in the courtroom against the district attorneys office. That’s what prompted him to throw his name in the hat for the DA spot.

“I’ve had a lot of jury trials and won more than 78 percent of those simply by being more prepared than the other side,” Bradshaw said. “I’ve talked to disgusted police departments, sheriff’s departments and … felt like I could take that job and do better. Prosecutors need to be more prepared when entering the courtroom for a hearing or trials. They need a passion for their jobs.”

Bradshaw will face Assistant District Attorney Tom Anderson in the June 1 Republican primary. There is no Democratic opposition. Anderson also boasts of only losing four of more than 50 jury trial cases.

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Bradshaw said something lacking in the DA office now is communication between victims, law enforcement and prosecutors, and that’s something he’d implement if elected.

“The victims, whether civilian or officers, need to be communicated with. Officers make cases and sometimes they hear that case has been resolved and were never told,” he said. “Officers can only carry a case so far before they turn it over to the DA’s office.”

Bradshaw, originally from Elba, graduated from then Troy State University and went to work as an insurance adjuster for Alfa. During that time, he studied law school at Jones School of Law and opened his law office in Enterprise in 1997.

Since then he said he has practiced law in 11 different counties, though his home office remains in Enterprise.

If elected, Bradshaw has several things he hopes to do. Among those is implementing a drug court in the circuit.

“Better than 80 percent of cases are drug related. The current administration has resisted implementing drug court,” he said. “It gives people a way to break the cycle. It goes a lot further than deferred prosecution.”

Bradshaw also said he would be a good steward of the DA’s financial resources, something he says are plenty to be had.

“The DA’s office takes in a large amount of money to use at their discretion. There are small police departments like New Brockton and Kinston that could use some help,” he said. “We could take some surplus from the DA’s office and bring them up to date in equipment to assist in investigations.”

Bradshaw said he also would like to see crimes prosecuted more strictly.

“There is a reputation for being soft (on crime) in this circuit. I’d like to see that reputation change so if a criminal is contemplating breaking the law, maybe they won’t,” Bradshaw said.

Bradshaw said he’s unsure of how he will handle the current personnel in the DA’s office if elected, but he does promise change.

“I won’t know (if I’ll keep all the staff there) until I’m in the office and can evaluate from the inside,” he said. “I solicit your vote to make a change. I have no ties or connections to any prior administration, therefore I can assuredly make the changes that need to be made.”