Torrez names interim Bernalillo County district attorney

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Bernalillo County District Attorney Raúl Torrez will officially step down Friday, so he can begin the new year as New Mexico’s attorney general. However, the governor’s office has yet to name his replacement.

This week Torrez sent a letter to District Court judges explaining this will be his last week in the DA’s office. He even named a temporary successor.

In the letter, Torrez explains how the New Mexico Constitution gives him the authority to name an interim DA as he moves on to become the attorney general.

Starting on Jan. 1, Deputy District Attorney Greer Staley will step into the role and will be the acting district attorney.

She was the prosecutor from the Fabian Gonzales trial in August, and she was able to successfully get a guilty verdict.

“I think in the end, they were able to see that this defendant was, in fact, guilty for participating in setting up the situation that led to her death,” Staley told KOB 4 this summer after the verdict was read by the jury.

KOB 4 reached out to Staley for a comment on her new role, but did not hear back by the end of the day.

But Torrez said in the letter to the courts:

“Staley is one of the most experienced and trusted prosecutors in the DA’s office. And I invite you to contact DDA Staley concerning any and all matters for which you would have contacted me.”

KOB 4 knows a handful of the applicants were interviewed Thursday for the DA position, but while we wait for the governor’s office to decide which of the 14 applicants to appoint– a spokesperson for the governor said that decision “will be made expeditiously.”

Full list of applicants:

Brianne Bigej, General Counsel, NMCD

Joshua Boone, Deputy District Attorney, 2nd JDA

Sam Bregman, Attorney, The Bregman Law Firm, P.C.

Evan Cochnar, Senior Litigation Attorney, GSD

John Duran, Deputy District Attorney, 2nd JDA

Alexander Flores, Assistant DA, United States DOJ

Joseph Gandert, Attorney, Self-employed

Diana Garcia, Deputy District Attorney, 2nd JDA

Joseph Gribble, Attorney, Crowley & Gribble, P.C.

Damon Martinez, Senior Policy Advisor, Abq. Police Department

Edmund Perea, Senior Litigator, Edmund Perea Law Firm

Ashley Schweizer, Assistant Attorney General

Steven S. Suttle, Retired

Matthias Swonger, Supervising Attorney, Abq. Felony Division, Law Offices of the Public Defender