Assistant prosecutor, city attorney among those seeking vacant judicial seat in Kanawha County

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Nine Kanawha County attorneys have applied to replace the late Kanawha County Circuit Judge Charles King.

Maryclaire Akers

Gov. Jim Justice’s office released the list Thursday to MetroNews.

The list includes Kanawha County Assistant Prosecutor Maryclaire Akers, Charleston City Attorney Kevin Baker, Kanawha County Family Court Judge Kenneth Ballard, Judge King’s law clerk Christine Fox along with Charleston area attorneys Samuel Marsh, the brother of state Coronavirus Czar Dr. Clay Marsh, Mark Browning, Travis Griffith, Elizabeth Kavitz and Benjamin Mishoe.

The deadline to apply for the open position was Wednesday. Interviews will take place before the Judicial Vacancy Advisory Commission on Feb. 11. Gov. Justice will choose King’s replacement.

Kevin Baker

King, 73, died on Dec. 28. He had served as circuit judge since 1988, including as chief judge on multiple occasions.

The seat will be up for election in May 2022.

Kanawha County Commission President Kent Carper called King ‘irreplaceable’ as the pillar of the judiciary in Kanawha County at the time of his death. He also said King was a ‘judge’s judge.’

“The rulings were very clear and decisive. Frankly, he was the type of person that you’d always get a fair ruling from. A wonderful person and a great judge,” Carper said.

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