COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) — Major changes are coming to Columbus Recorder’s Court in the new year.
Senior Recorder’s Court Judge Julius Hunter will be retiring at the end of the month.
Tuesday morning Columbus Council appointed local attorney David Ranieri to replace Hunter. The vote was unanimous.
Ranieri is a veteran of the Army JAG corps and has been practicing law for 34 years.
Columbus Council also appointed two attorneys – Susan Henderson and Alonza Whitaker — to serve as full-time Recorder’s Court judges. Henderson and Whitaker had previously served in the Muscogee County District Attorney’s Office. Both were currently in private practice.
Henderson has been a part-time Recorder’s Court judge, primarily handling environmental cases.
Ranieri says he will work with Henderson and Whitaker to revamp the court in the coming months.
“It is a wide range from murder to stop sign violations to city ordinance violations,” Ranieri said. “We see everything. Every type of crime.”
Ranieri, Henderson, and Whitaker will assume their new duties on Jan. 1.
The terms will run for four years. Ranieri will be paid $120,000 per year, and Henderson and Whitaker will each earn $114,000 annually. Councilor Judy Thomas said this will eliminate the need for most of the part-time Recorder’s Court judges.