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District attorney stepping down after current term

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Scott Monroe

Scott Monroe is retiring as the 198th District Attorney for Kerr and Bandera counties at the end of his term, saying as he approaches 67, he’s looking for new challenges.

“It’s time to retire,” said Monroe, who will have served eight years as DA when he steps down early next year. “I’m ready to do what’s next.”

He said he made a “late career change” by opting to run as the district’s chief criminal prosecutor after 35 years of private law practice but was glad he did it and feels satisfied with what he has accomplished.

“It’s been a really rewarding and satisfying experience. I learned a lot,” said Monroe.

He said it helped that he was an assistant district attorney when he got out of law school. He gave up prosecutorial work for decades before opting to take the assignment on again. Monroe believes he performed his duties well.

“I handled cases as appropriately as I know how to handle them. For the most part, I’m satisfied,” he said.

The 198th District Attorney has sole authority over criminal prosecutions in Bandera and shares prosecutorial responsibilities in Kerr County with the 216th District Court. Monroe said that arose when district responsibilities were realigned about four years ago.

The district attorney’s office works with law enforcement officers on criminal investigations, presents cases to grand jury for indictment and prosecutes the case if an indictment is returned.

Monroe has run as a Republican, which has dominated local office in Bandera and Kerr counties, and his assistant district attorney, Stephen Harpold, filed as a Republican candidate for the DA’s post to replace Monroe when he leaves.

Harpold was the only Republican to seek that post, and no Democrat has filed to run against him in November, so his election is all but assured.

In announcing his candidacy for the nomination, Harpold said he had worked as an assistant district attorney in Harris County and had practiced law in Kerrville with friends Pat Pattillo and Greg Richards for 14 years before going to work for the 198th District in 2014.

Harpold said under Monroe’s leadership, the assistant’s post was one he grew to love, and he hopes the voters of the district will allow him to continue as the chief prosecutor and to seek justice for residents of Kerr and Bandera counties.

Monroe said he endorses the candidacy of his assistant prosecutor and believe Harpold “will be a great DA.”

Harpold has been married to his wife Jill for 28 years. They have three children