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Assistant Commonwealth Attorney I

Charlottesville, VA
Full Time
Job #: 210600013 Exp.: 5+ Years Salary: $58,849 - $76,502 Yearly
General Summary:
The Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney I is responsible for the prosecution of routine criminal felony, misdemeanor, and traffic cases. Under the direct supervision of the Deputy and Assistant Commonwealth Attorney IIs, the position determines the method of prosecution including potential case negotiations, plea agreements, and sentencing requests; prepares for court by researching legal issues, reviewing facts, studying scientific reports, and interviewing witnesses; prepares related papers including appellate briefs; maintains contact with the public and with those involved in the case.

The Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney I works under the general direction of the Commonwealth's Attorney, and is a junior-level trial lawyer position in the Office of the Commonwealth's Attorney.

The starting amount will be between $58,848.55 and $76,502.40 annually. Starting salary will be based on applicable education, experience, and internal equity. This is a full-time, exempt, position. The City provides excellent benefits including 13 paid holidays, paid vacation and sick leave, health insurance options with employer contribution, employer-paid life insurance, City's retirement options, and continuing education/training opportunities.

Essential Responsibilities and Duties
General Legal:
For all Assistant Commonwealth Attorney I positions:
  • Primarily responsible for misdemeanor dockets and bond hearings;
  • Determines method of and prepares for the prosecution of routine criminal cases;
  • Prosecutes routine criminal cases;
  • Researches legal issues and maintains familiarity with local, state, and federal laws;
  • Maintains contact with the public, with victims and witnesses, and with law enforcement officers;
  • Provides legal research support to senior prosecutors;
  • Represent the office in a variety of settings including but not limited to: Jefferson Area Elder Abuse Jefferson Area Coalition to End Elder Abuse (JACEEA), Mental Health Treatment Court, and Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) Crisis Review Team.

For the Juvenile and Domestic Violence Prosecutor specialty position:
  • Prosecutes domestic violence cases in Juvenile and Domestic Relations General District Court. These cases include both felony and misdemeanor cases involving domestic partners. Typical misdemeanor cases include domestic assault and battery, violation of a protective order, stalking. Typical felony cases include malicious wounding, strangulation, abduction, and child neglect;
  • Represent the Commonwealth at daily bond hearings in Juvenile Court;
  • Make decisions about detention, bail considerations and appropriate release terms including contact terms. These decisions must be made with an awareness of existing protective orders that are in place as well as Child Protective Services (CPS) safety plan terms;
  • Act as Commonwealth liaison for allied partners (ReadyKids, Foothills Child Advocacy Center, Sexual Assault Resource Agency, Shelter for Help in Emergency) and other City agencies (CPS, DSS, APS, City Attorney Office);
  • Specifically, must be able to respond to Child Protective Services and Charlottesville Police Department questions and issues immediately on a daily basis regarding joint investigations, the appropriateness of forensic interviews, and proper investigative avenue;

  • Prosecutes a variety of misdemeanor and felony cases;
  • Prepares and argues pre-trial and post-trial motions;
  • Prepares exhibits and evidence for trial;
  • Examines and cross-examines witnesses;
  • Delivers opening and closing arguments and argues admissibility of evidence;
  • Chooses and prepares jury instructions;
  • Determines trial tactics;
  • Argues sentencing in misdemeanor and felony cases;
  • Prosecutes violations of good behavior and probation

Consults with police, victims, witnesses, and concerned citizens about the disposition of criminal cases and trial testimony;

  • Directs and coordinates the work of patrol officers in the investigation of matters being prepared for prosecution, providing guidance on search and seizure issues, the constitutionality of police actions, and planning and conducing regular police trainings on a variety of issues;
  • Visits crime scenes; studies scientific analyses and other investigative reports and memoranda;

For all Assistant Commonwealth Attorney I positions:
Ability to supervise and work with summer and academic year law student interns;

For the Juvenile and Domestic Violence Prosecutor specialty position:
Act as Commonwealth representative for the Monticello Domestic Violence Fatality Review Team and Multi-Disciplinary Team for child abuse and neglect cases;

  • Conduct roll call trainings on at least an annual basis on identifying the predominant aggressor for domestic assault and battery cases and strangulation
  • Conduct roll call trainings on at least an annual basis with CPS to train police on mandated reporting and child abuse/neglect cases and investigations
  • Conduct trainings related to domestic violence and sexual assault annually for Sexual Assault Resource Agency hotline volunteer;
  • Conduct training for forensic nurses on how to testify in court as both fact and expert witnesses, conduct mock trial, teaching how to be prepared for possible objections, and explain the court system;

For all Assistant Commonwealth Attorney I positions:
Performs other related duties as required or assigned by the Commonwealth's Attorney or designee.

Education, Experience and Skills
Minimum Requirements:
  • Completion of the requirements for graduation with a JD in law from an accredited college or university.
  • Minimum five (5) years of experience as a criminal trial attorney or two (2) years as a prosecutor (externships or clinical placements with prosecutor's offices may count towards the two years), and having tried a minimum of three (3) jury trials.

Proficiency in Spanish.

For all Atty Is: Extensive knowledge of Virginia law, including knowledge needed for and membership to the Virginia State Bar. Thorough knowledge of legal research methods. Thorough knowledge of the Code of Professional Responsibility for attorneys. Thorough understanding of the criminal justice system and related community agencies. Ability to express complex ideas orally and in writing. Ability to maintain effective working relationships with staff, other attorneys, and members of the community. Ability to participate effectively in collaborative projects which utilize staff, members of the criminal justice system, and/or members of the community. A high level of skill in preparing and conducting criminal prosecutions in routine cases. Ability to work in a high-speed and chaotic environment, coordinate numerous officers and witnesses, and communicate effectively with victims and witnesses from a variety of backgrounds required.

For Juvenile and Domestic Violence Prosecutor specialty position: A working knowledge of civil protective orders is required; Specific knowledge of Brady and exculpatory/ impeachment/mitigating disclosures is required; Awareness of mandated reporter obligations and CPS obligations for domestic violence cases is required; Specific knowledge of rules of evidence applicable in domestic violence cases such as excited utterances, present sense impression is required, knowledge of evidence-based prosecutions is required (such as the admissibility of 911 calls and medical records, implications of Crawford/ confrontation issues); Must possess a working knowledge of the Blueprint for Safety/ LAP;Specific skills include an understanding of OAR risk assessments for DV offenders as well as DV-specific behavioral modification models such as MRT and BIP as opposed to anger management.

Physical Conditions & Work Contacts
Standard work environment.

Closing Date: 25th June, 2021

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