On Thursday, April 4, 2024, Law.com reported that Douglas County Chief Assistant Solicitor General Valerie Vie is challenging incumbent Douglas County Probate Judge Christina Peterson in the May 21st primary election. The article provided background information on both candidates in anticipation of voters heading to the polls.

Judge Peterson is currently serving her first term in office, which is set to expire at the end of the year. Unlike her uncontested election in 2022, she now faces a qualified opponent in Valerie Vie. The article outlines Peterson’s accomplishments during her term, including establishing Douglas County’s first felony drug court and the county’s first Article 6 Probate Court. She processed over 150 marriage licenses for free and achieved clearance rate excellence.

However, Peterson has also faced judicial misconduct probes from the Judicial Qualifications Commission. In 2021, she was investigated over allegations such as improperly jailing a citizen without due process and allowing after-hours access to the courthouse. In 2022, the probe expanded to include issues like ex-parte communications in probate matters. Last month, the JQC Hearing Panel recommended the judge be removed for failing to respect and follow the law.

Valerie Vie hopes to take Peterson’s place on the bench. She has worked as a prosecutor in Baltimore and as a special assistant state’s attorney in Georgia. Vie also spent time in private practice in Douglasville and made history as the first African American president of the county bar association. Currently serving as Chief Assistant Solicitor General, she helps prosecute various misdemeanor cases.

Vie’s campaign has emphasized ethical attributes, hinting at Peterson’s ongoing investigation. However, Vie did not respond to the news outlet’s questionnaire for the voter guide.

Without a Supreme Court ruling on Peterson’s potential removal prior to the election, voters will decide between the two candidates in the May 21st primary. The article provides insight into the candidates’ backgrounds, accomplishments, and issues ahead of residents casting their ballots later next month.



Source: Law.com