Sent: Monday, July 10, 2017 3:53 PM
Subject: Leaving HCAO
Dear friends and colleagues, today I submitted my notice at the Hillsborough County Attorney’s Office – my last day will be August 2. I did so with mixed emotions. I have been honored to serve the State of New Hampshire as a prosecutor for the last eleven years and First Assistant for the past two. The work done by the attorneys, advocates, and staff in the office is amazing. It is done with passion and professionalism to serve victims and represent ordinary citizens in society. I support and applaud all of you who have chosen to make this your career, including law enforcement and advocacy groups who all work together with similar challenges and goals. As you all know, it is intellectually challenging and emotionally draining to deal with only the darker side of society in a criminal justice system that is neither designed to support the rights of victims, nor the true desire to rehabilitate those who should be rehabilitated. The challenges of our work are often overlooked and the resources to properly carry out our mission are often withheld, even by the very people who pass the laws we are asked to enforce. Nonetheless, we carry on and do the best we can.
As I sit reflecting on my time as a prosecutor there is so much I think about that I cannot put into words. I think about the girl who could not describe her abuse without putting her hands over her face and whispering words she could not say out loud. I think of the picture of a young man with his neck sliced open from a machete. I think of a bright, smiling young girl who was bright and smiling and looking forward to a new family despite having endured unspeakable horror at the hands of her parents. I think of the secret emails typed out by a pedophile who fondly reminisced on his dozens of victims with his like-minded digital friends, to which he attached pictures of countless other abused and exploited children. This darkness has taken its toll on me emotionally and lately it feels as if it is all I think of. Hopefully I’ve helped some victims. Hopefully I’ve helped some defendants. I believe I have made a difference and so the fight has been worth it, but for me, for now, that fight is at an end.
As many of you know, Sara and I plan to move out West and take some time to reset. Having taught 5th and 6th graders with enthusiasm and devotion, and dealt with administrators and parents, for the past thirteen years, Sara needs a break too. Our goal is to spend next winter living in ski area parking lots and snowboarding every day. To accomplish this goal we intend to buy a large van and convert it into a camper. If you just read that sentence and think you have been pranked, I’m sorry to say you have not. Either you know us well enough to know we are crazy enough to do it (the van was actually Sara’s idea), or you can just mark it down as evidence of how badly I need a break. Instead of a mental breakdown, a messy divorce, or a convertible we will just play out our mid-life crises in ski area and Walmart parking lots throughout the West. We have property in Idaho where we expect to land sooner or later, but beyond #vanlife and a full season of snowboarding, we have no specific plans. I haven’t entirely decided if I will seek digital exile or will (over)share our adventures, but you can keep an eye on www.powderhunds.com to see if we decide to blog.
Thank you for all your support personally and professionally in New Hampshire. I will miss working with all of you.