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DEVELOPING: Arlington’s Top Prosecutor Retiring

by ARLnow.com December 1, 2010 at 11:46 am 2,617 26 Comments

Arlington County Commonwealth’s Attorney Richard E. Trodden announced his retirement today.

The four-term prosecutor said he will not seek re-election next year. In a statement, Trodden endorsed Chief Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Theo Stamos to be his successor.

“Theo has earned, in her nearly 25 years of experience, the respect of the bench, the defense bar, her colleagues and the citizens of Arlington County and the City of Falls Church,” Trodden said. “She is the right person at the right time.”

Stamos, a Democrat, also has the backing of Arlington County Sheriff Beth Arthur and Clerk of the Circuit Court Paul Ferguson.

“Theo is tough but fair,” said Ferguson. “She’s a compassionate and caring person,” as well as “a great prosecutor and a community leader.”

Stamos says she’s ready for the job.

“I’m passionate about the work our office does and I’m grateful for Dick’s endorsement,” she said. “I’m looking forward to campaigning and to winning the support of the voters of Arlington and Falls Church.”

Photo via Office of the Commonwealth’s Attorney

  • el fat kid

    typical fun and games of the incestuous arlington political system – Stamos was told of this decision way ahead of time, already has a website up and accepting donations, list of supporters, etc.

    • cj

      Nonetheless, if more than one person files for the Democratic nomination, there will be an open primary or caucus next spring. So if you want the job and have any qualifications, go for it!

    • AllenB

      Riiiiight…. because Arlington is the only place in the country where elected office holders try to help who they think should be their successor.

  • James Martin

    I see Theo in action every day and she is hands down the right person for that job! Thorough, fair, a perennial hard worker, and with alot of experience in the Office, what else could you ask for?

    • Arlington, Northside

      she did not think I was the right person for here jury a couple of years ago….

      • cj

        Does that show her sound judgment, or not?

        • Arlington, Northside

          Relative to the general population, sure does! But, relative to the rest of the jury pool that day I was kind of surprised.

          • BoredHouseWife

            She just wanted someone who was more apt to be on her side of things.

          • Arlington, Northside

            Don’t know why she would think that. Clearly I believe that the cops would not have arrested someone if they were really innocent. 😉

  • The Pope of South Arlington

    “She’s a compassionate and caring person,”

    As is anyone who sends people to jail for a living, right?

    • Take it down a notch

      Sure, if you care about the victims.

      • The Pope of South Arlington

        Yeah, this is why lawyers feed people to the system, because they care. The 160+ lawyers in congress are there because they care. What world are you livin’ in?

    • Ex-Communicated

      Hero of the Downtrodden (no pun intended)? Champion of the Oppressed? Get a grip Pope (unlike your namesake, who will likely forever remain detached from reality).. There is no gulag system in Arlington. First, as you may or may not recall from your civics class, JUDGES and JURIES send people to jail, not prosecutors. They make the case for the victims and Society, and that is a hard case to make in Arlington, where the bench is comprised largely of former defense attorneys. Despite the hard-nosed legal reputation of Virginia as a whole, Arlington is a wee-bit more inclined to leniency.. Regardless, I have had the opportunity over the past decade from the sidelines to watch Ms. Stamos exemplify what it means to be a professional prosecutor – tenacious, fair, and 100% dedicated to doing her sworn duty. Despise if you will the imperfect system we have, I challenge you to compile a list of persons unjustifiably incarcerated by the “system” in *Arlington* (because yes, I will readily agree with you that innocent persons have and will be wrongly convicted and incarcerated in this country – refer back to the “imperfect” part). If you can compile any names at all, I suspect you may have trouble finding many impartial law abiding citizens (or even non-citizens!) who will agree that their sentence was a travesty of justice. Perhaps you should re-read your ACLU New Member informational packet for some better-informed sound bytes =)

      Oh, and as much as I despise the hell lawyers have wreaked on our society as a whole – especially in Congress as elected members and as lobbyists – I would propose that *some* lawyers are out there trying to do the right thing. Ms. Stamos is one of them. Defense attorneys who defend their clients based on rational disputation of fact, and not trivial technicalities meant to skirt obvious guilt, are also in those ranks. But I digress…

      • el fat kid

        wow. it’s been a while since i’ve read something as ridiculously stupid and poorly written as this. thank you, i guess.

        You’re either over-empowered by an associate’s degree in typing, hitting up happy hour too early, or a wannabe populist confused by several years of conformism with schizophrenic thought patterns.

        • BoredHouseWife

          Aren’t we all?

      • The Pope of South Arlington

        RE: Ex-Communicated

        What level of mind desires being a punitive instrument of the state, in fact, relishes it?!?!?

        “Ms. Stamos exemplify what it means to be a professional prosecutor – tenacious, fair, and 100% dedicated to doing her sworn duty.”

        This is some uncut patriotard bilge right here! Do you Tivo Sean Handjobity?

        You’re a frightened zombie posturing in a vacuum of your own making.

      • Bender

        Ex-Communicated — was there a point to your bigoted anti-Catholic, gratuitous hate-speech remark?

  • gary

    Go Theo!

    • FedUp


  • Bender

    I too have known and worked with Theo Stamos for about 15 years now. As a defense attorney, I have observed that there have been a couple of prosecutors who were not very good or who were over the top obnoxious. But Theo has always been exceptionally fair, reasonable, smart, and commonsensical.

  • Pope, please stop posting idiotic comments

    Pope, your idiotic views are too much to read this time of the morning. Theo Stamos is a professional, which is why she performs her job in the way the numerous comments on here suggest. In case you didn’t read the article or perhaps you were unable to comprehend it… she is a prosecutor, not a member of Congress as you compare. I will spell it out for you… she prosecutes people for the crimes he/she commits. Sometimes that means sending people to jail, although I would estimate people actually only go to jail an estimated 5-10% after they are convicted. Would you prefer these idiots are allowed to run free without the proper punishment? Perhaps you were one of these people convicted of a crime that was prosecuted by Theo or a colleague of hers? Is that why you fail to understand? You want to criticize the system, yet you do not offer a proper alternative.

    • JackFan

      Agreed. Same goes for el fat kid… Take the tinfoil caps off kids.

    • The Pope of South Arlington

      Listen up skip plate, I compared her to members of congress because 160+ of them are/were lawyers – majority former prosecutors.

      “Would you prefer these idiots are allowed to run free without the proper punishment?”

      You mean people like Jim “I beat my wife, took bribes and betrayed the public trust” Moran or the kid who stole a pair of jeans from TJ Max?

      Sh*t rolls down hill, thats the only civics lesson you ever need know.

      Now lets have an Autumn Afternoon with Jim Moran…


  • Pettifogger

    Theo already has a challenger for the Democratic primary: A guy named David Deane who put in two years as a prosecutor right out of law school so that he could convert that experience to a well-paying firm gig defending drunk drivers. Everyone, including Deane, knew that Dick was retiring. Before last night, Deane had never been to a meeting of the Arlington Democrats. Although I do not believe that someone who gets drunk drivers lighter sentences is the right choice for our lead prosecutor, he will have a full and fair opportunity to run for the nomination.

  • DT

    Best wishes to Dick Trodden. You did a great job.

  • Sean

    Theo is a top notch prosecutor, person, and administrator. GO THEO!!!!


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