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Jan. 29, 2022

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Clark County Council picks Abigail Bartlett for judicial vacancy

Finalists to replace Zimmerman on bench also selected

By , Columbian staff writer

The Clark County Council has appointed District Court Commissioner Abigail Bartlett to one of two judicial vacancies on the bench.

Bartlett was chosen to fill the Department 6 seat that opened when Judge John Hagensen retired June 30. She has served as a court commissioner since July 2017 and, before that, was a senior deputy prosecutor with the Clark County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, according to a county news release.

While Bartlett was a prosecutor, she was a team leader in the juvenile unit and unit coordinator for the Elder Justice Center. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in international studies from the University of Washington and juris doctor from Seattle University.

Bartlett was unavailable for comment before press time Wednesday.

The council also selected finalists for the Department 3 seat previously held by Judge Darvin Zimmerman. He retired June 30 after temporarily stepping away from the bench following calls for his resignation over his comments about a young Black man killed by deputies and his family.

Clark County Senior Deputy Prosecutor James Smith and District Court Commissioner Todd George will have second interviews for Zimmerman’s seat. The council interviewed Bartlett, Smith, George and Lisa Toth on Tuesday for the openings, according to the county.

“This was an impressive list of candidates,” County Chair Eileen Quiring O’Brien said in the news release. “It was a pleasure to listen to everyone; we are in good hands.”

Smith and George’s interviews will be at noon July 26 and are open to the public via WebEx. People can listen in by calling 408-418-9388 and dialing the access code 1463 01 6262.

Bartlett and the candidate appointed to the Department 3 seat will have to run for reelection in 2022 in order to keep their seats. District Court judges serve four-year terms; all District Court judge positions are up for election in 2022.

According to the county website, monthly pay for District Court judges is $15,843, or $190,116 annually, effective July 1, 2020.