CHARLESTON - Long-time assistant prosecuting attorney Stephen Revercomb was named Kanawha County's new prosecuting attorney on Wednesday afternoon.
Revercomb was chosen Wednesday by the Kanawha County Commission to fill the place of Bill Charnock, who resigned March 2. He was among five applicants who spoke before the commission.
"I gratefully and humbly accept," Revercomb said, with his wife and father by his side after Chief Circuit Judge Charles King swore him in. "I thank the commission for trusting in me and appointing me to this position."
Revercomb, who has spent more than 23 years as an assistant prosecuting attorney in Kanawha County, and Don Morris, also an assistant prosecuting attorney, where the two applicants to choose between in the commission's eyes.
Commissioner David Hardy said the two men are both well established and it would be a risk to pass one of them up for the position.
"It was literally about a flip of a coin," Hardy said about choosing Revercomb. However, Hardy continued to say it was Revercomb's work with the grand jury that made him more qualified for the position.
Revercomb has spent the last 10 years managing the Kanawha County Grand Jury. His responsibilities included the review, preparation and presentment of cases to the grand jury.
Hardy, Commission President Kent Carper and Commissioner Hoppy Shores all agreed to appoint Revercomb to complete the term for the prosecuting attorney, which is over after the 2008 election.
"I've never been as comfortable with a vote I've made in 10 years," Carper said.
During the two-hour meeting, Revercomb, Morris, Virginia Grottendieck Lanham and Mark Plants all spoke before the commission. House of Delegates member Patrick Lane called in his interview because he was busy with the Legislature being in session. A sixth candidate, Frederick Staker, withdrew his name before the meeting started.
The current term for prosecutor will be open to a public vote during the 2008 election, and Revercomb said he would see how the year goes before he decides if he wants to run for election.
A common theme at the meeting was how the applicants planned to attract and keep more assistant prosecuting attorneys. Carper called the office a "revolving door" because so many people leave the office after a short tenure.
"I will do my best to see the revolving door, as (the commission) says, stops," Revercomb said.