District Attorney Pete Skandalakis announces his re-election bidFrom Staff Reports
Incumbent Coweta Judicial Circuit District Attorney Peter J. Skandalakis has announced his intention to seek re-election as District Attorney for a sixth term.
Skandalakis is now serving his fifth consecutive elected term as district attorney, following an appointment in 1991 to perform the duties of the office.
Prior to assuming the DA’s post, Skandalakis spent four years as the chief assistant district attorney, and three years as an assistant district attorney, all in the Coweta Judicial Circuit DA’s Office. He has personally tried hundreds of felony cases, including murders, child molestations, rapes, and armed robberies. Also, he has successfully prosecuted several “cold case” homicides, including Connie Quedens, for the 17-year-old homicide of Fred Wilkerson, bringing closure to his family members who lost their loved one almost two decades earlier. In addition, his office solved the 33-year-old murder of Gwendolyn Moore, who had been killed by her husband, Marshall Moore in 1970. These prosecutions have garnered national attention when he was featured on three national television shows — 48 Hours, DateLine NBC and A&E Cold Case Files. He also successfully prosecuted three defendants for the 14-year-old homicide of Joe Rainwater and his son, George Rainwater, who were killed when they surprised the three men during a burglary in their home.
During his tenure as District Attorney, Skandalakis has implemented numerous projects that have streamlined operations and created a modern DA’s Office by implementing new technology. On the state level, he encouraged the creation of a web-based case management system created just for prosecutor’s offices that allows prosecutors to view and work on cases wherever there is internet service. In addition, he has one of only a few district attorneys offices in the state that provides digital discovery to defense attorneys, saving thousands of dollars in copying and manpower costs. Skandalakis has utilized funds seized from drug dealers to improve the technology in his office, and has maintained his attention to fiscal responsibility and efficiency, thereby resulting in the DA’s Office consistently running under budget ever since taking office.
In order to meet the service demands of one of Georgia’s fastest growing regions, Skandalakis’ staff has grown to more than 50 employees, including 19 assistant prosecutors. “I’m proud of the regard in which our professional staff is held,” stated Skandalakis. “I have prosecutors who have been instructors in trial advocacy at the Fundamentals of Prosecution Training Course for New Prosecutors, as well as the Georgia Prosecuting Attorney’s Council Training Seminars.” “Each year, my staff provides instruction at the Man Tracker Training sponsored by the Coweta County Sheriff’s Office, where they teach area law enforcement officers on Search and Seizure, Constitutional Law, Temporary Protective Orders, Victims’ Rights, and how to professionally testify in a courtroom.”
The Victim Assistance Division of his office has taken on an expanded role, Skandalakis pointed out. “The staff in this division,” he said “have tirelessly worked toward sympathetically delivering the many services which crime victims must receive by law. Additionally, this division provides many services not mandated by law, but which crime victims have every right to expect. They make the time, no matter how long it takes, to assist and comfort our victims.”
Skandalakis was the recipient of the 2007 “Georgia District Attorney of the Year” Award for his contributions to Georgia’s prosecution community. In addition, he was honored by the Prosecuting Attorneys’ Council of Georgia with the J. Roger Thompson award for an exceptional faculty member of the Georgia’s Basic Litigation for New Prosecutors course. Skandalakis has been honored by the Governor’s Criminal Justice Coordinating Council of Georgia with their “Eagle Award” for his outstanding contributions to victim services in Georgia.
He has served as president of the District Attorney’s Association of Georgia, chairman of the Board of Directors of the Prosecuting Attorneys’ Council of Georgia for three terms, and has served as chairman of Georgia’s Basic Litigation Course for New Prosecutors for seven years. He is also a past chairman of the Board for PROJECT L.O.V.E., a domestic violence shelter.
Skandalakis received his law degree in 1984, a Master’s degree in Public Administration in 1981 and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science in 1978, all from the University of Georgia. He has been a resident of Troup County for more than 28 years, and is the proud father of three teenage daughters. Skandalakis is a member of the First Baptist Church of LaGrange and has been involved children’s soccer and basketball teams for more than 20 years.
“As a prosecutor, I have represented the citizens of the Coweta Judicial Circuit for over 27 years and for over 21 of those years as their elected District Attorney, I would be honored to serve as District Attorney for another term. I love this job and I believe this is where the good Lord has put me to serve the people of this circuit,” Skandalakis said.