Prosecutor Candidates

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Jim Schneider and Kevin Rings are both long-time assistant prosecutors, and both have tackled and won major cases. About the only difference between them is the length of their experience.

"I command the respect of all the judges, the present and former county commissioners," says Schneider, "as well as the lawyers we come in contact with daily."

"After 17 years of practicing law," says Rings, "I've decided what I really like is criminal prosecution. That's why I came back to run for this job."

Both candidates agree the job of the prosecutor has become more and more difficult over the years, even with technological advances some believe would make that job easier.

Rings says popular TV shows have given people, many of them potential jurors, an inaccurate view of the effectiveness of DNA and other forensic evidence.

"We have jurors who don't think the police have done their job if they don't have fingerprints or videotapes or full DNA tests," Rings explains. "I think the defense plays on that."

Schneider, however, says the biggest change in his 25 years in the prosecutor's office involves its workload.

"At the time, the prosecutor was a part-time position," he says. "Now, we have a full-time prosecutor and four full-time assistants."

No matter who is elected prosecutor, the other candidate is likely to remain an assistant in the office.