Election day is less than three weeks away, and one of the races on the ballot in St. Landry Parish is the District Attorney's race.
Reigning Charles Cravins (D) faces a challenge from candidate Chad Pitre (R).
Cravins from Opelousas is the democratically incumbent candidate for the district attorney, who has been in office since February 2020.
Washington-based Pitre is a Republican candidate currently serving as an attorney in his law firm and assistant attorney general for Jeff Landry in Baton Rouge, with 30 years of law enforcement experience.
Please provide a brief description of your professional background and experience as a volunteer.
Pitre: "I've been an attorney for a little over 20 years. During that time I've handled litigation, banking, criminal, civil, prosecution, and assistant prosecution. I currently serve as the Assistant Attorney General for Jeff Landry in Baton Rouge, and I'm nearly 30." Years of law enforcement experience at the federal, state and local levels. "
Cravins: “I have been a Zydeco and Creole business owner and promoter of local culture all my life. I still have a radio program that started in 1986 and is still on the air. I owned an insurance agency. I was a government coordinator for a member of Congress. I joined the prosecution as the chief administrative officer before going to law school. I became an assistant district attorney, and then became the first assistant district attorney. I have been the District Attorney for the 27th JDC since February 3rd. "
Why did you choose to run for prosecutor?
Pitre: "One of the main reasons I run is to prove to people that they can still elect an official who does what they say they do, who keeps their campaign promises, not just for the campaign trail, but keep these promises once you are in office. I think you do this by being grounded, having integrity, putting God first in your life, and that is what I want to do every day. "
Cravins: “I just feel the need to give something back to this area that I love so much. I love the St. Landry Parish. I love the people here. We have wonderful people and I just want to be part of what is good in this church. "
What areas would you like to focus on as a public prosecutor?
Pitre: “The St. Landry Parish law firm needs a change in leadership. There are nearly 6,500 cases of crimes that have not yet been brought to justice. 42 of these are homicides and these numbers are not acceptable. To make matters worse, there are over 6,500 victims and families of victims who have not received justice. It's time for a change and the problem isn't law enforcement. The St. Landry Parish law enforcement officers are some of the best in Louisiana. The problem is the lack of law enforcement. "
Cravins: “On my first day in office, I had a meeting with all the local law enforcement agencies and we changed our admissions process to reduce the time between arrest and resolution by an average of four months. We have also developed some witness protection programs, for which we have also implemented a school fees program that has been financed by the state through our local lawmakers. "
Where would you like to improve the St. Landry Parish District Law Office and how would you do that?
Pitre: “The prosecutor's office in St. Landry Parish is broken. That's why I have to change in the lead ship. It's time to go to work. The top three lawyers in the St. Landry Parish DA office collectively earn over $ 500,000 annually and do not attempt any crime. That has to be changed. Resources need to be channeled into the courtroom and criminal record to work with our judges and law enforcement partners to clear this backlog. "
Cravins: "There are no files that we do not actively and aggressively pursue. If there are criminals who are not prosecuted and who are not brought to justice, it is because they have an active warrant that does not. " be executed by law enforcement agencies. "
Do you see prosecutors moving in a positive direction and how would you add to that?
Pitre: I think everything goes back to safe streets and safe neighborhoods. When you have safe roads, when you have safe neighborhoods, when crime is reduced, then it is a better quality of life for everyone, not just a few. That's what we aim for, but it takes hard work and law enforcement. "
Cravins: "The district law firm needs to be independent. The reason people have to vote for me is because we're just real. My experience is real, my independence is real, and that's what St. Landry Parish in needs a district attorney. "
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