By Max Hrenda
Dennis Brooks has announced his candidacy for the Criminal Court judge position that will be vacated in 2014 when Judge Robert Cupp retires at the conclusion of his term.
Brooks has served 15 years as a leading prosecutor in the first judicial, district which covers Carter, Johnson, Unicoi and Washington Counties. He currently works as the assistant district attorney general, and works primarily out of Carter County.
“Judge Cupp has served our district with distinction for 15 years,” Brooks said. “It’s been my honor to serve the community I grew up in as a prosecutor. Protecting the community where my family and friends live is important to me, and I would feel even stronger about that as judge.”
Since earning his law license in 1997, Brooks has spent the entirety of his law career working in the first district. His record includes almost 100 jury trials – in each of the district’s counties – including five first-degree murder convictions this year, the latest of which came against Marvin Potter, who made national news after his arrest in the the deaths of Billie Jean Hayworth and Billy Payne Jr. in Mountain City.
Potter wasn’t Brooks’ first time handling a widely publicized case.