Deal appoints DeKalb County deputy chief district attorney to head public defenders

ATLANTA – Gov.-elect Nathan Deal on Friday appointed a deputy chief district attorney in DeKalb County to serve as the director of the Georgia Public Defenders Standards Council.

Travis Sakrison, 40, replaces a former state legislator who the current governor appointed to the position three months ago. The council is an independent agency aimed at ensuring that defendants represented by a public defender receive adequate counsel.

Gov. Sonny Perdue in September appointed former state Rep. Rob Teilhet, D-Smyrna, to the post. He replaced Mack Crawford, who left the post to serve as a superior court judge in the Griffin Judicial Circuit.

In his current role as a deputy chief district attorney in DeKalb County, Sakrison oversees the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area task force and asset forfeiture units.

Sakrison, who earned his J.D. from Oklahoma City University School of Law in 1998, previously served as a chief senior assistant district attorney in Fulton County from 2001 until 2006. In addition, he served as a senior staff attorney for Georgia Court of Appeals Judge John J. Ellington and an attorney for the Consumers’ Insurance Advocate of Georgia.

Teilhet was first elected to the state house in 2002 representing Smyrna and part of Marietta, but did not seek re-election this year and instead ran for the Democratic nomination for Attorney General. Teilhet lost in the primary to Ken Hodges, the former District Attorney for Dougherty County.

Sakrison starts in his new role Jan. 10.

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