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Inslee picks Spokane County prosecutor to fill Superior Court judge vacancy

UPDATED: Tue., April 11, 2017, 11:08 p.m.

Gov. Jay Inslee appointed Spokane County prosecutor Tony Hazel to the Spokane County Superior Court Tuesday, filling the seat left vacant by the late Sam Cozza, who died unexpectedly in January.

In a news release posted to the governor’s website, Inslee praised Hazel’s background as a seasoned trial attorney and his “impressive work implementing more efficient and expedient tools such as the Early Case Resolution Program, which allows people charged with certain crimes to plead guilty and resolve their cases at the time of their arraignment.

“His evident passion for justice and reform efforts will benefit the entire community,” Inslee wrote in the release.

Hazel, who has worked as a county prosecutor since 2004, previously worked for the Yakima County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, according to a governor’s news release. He has served on the Spokane County Bar Association since 2012 and was elected president of the association in 2014. He received the Salvation Army’s “Making Spokane Better” award in 2012.


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