03/17/05 — Carl Fox: A native son has done well

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Carl Fox: A native son has done well

Wayne County can take great pride in the recent appointment of one of its native sons to a Superior Court judgeship.

He is Carl Fox, who grew up in Mount Olive and graduated from Southern Wayne High School. Son of the late Carl R. and Rachel Fox, he received his law degree from the University of North Carolina at Chaepl Hill.

Fox made a fine name for himself while serving as district attorney in the Orange-Chatham District.

Gov. Mike Easley chose him for the new Superior Court seat for which funding was made available last year. A number of lawyers and lower court judges reportedly had been seeking the appointment.

Fox has served as district attorney since 1984. He has earned a reputation for hard work and fairness in preparing cases and presenting evidence. An assistant district attorney commented that Fox “really believes everyone deserves to be heard and have their rights protected.”

Said James Wooddall, who will succeed Fox as district attorney: “ I think he will be a real champion on both sides, for victims and families and for defendants.”

Another lawyer, James Williams, public defender in that judicial district, was quoted as saying Fox didn’t exhibit a “win-at-all costs mentality” demonstrated by some prosecutors.

As district attorney, he said, Fox understood that his duty “was not just to convict, but to see that justice is done.”

In another jurisdiction, a defendant was sentenced to death in a case in which prosecutors had withheld from defense lawyers evidence that pointed to innocence. The convicted man since has been set free and the prosecutors repremanded.

Many in Wayne County, especially former classmates from Southern Wayne, have followed Carl Fox’s career with interest and admiration.

Easley made an excellent choice in this appointment.

Published in Editorials on March 17, 2005 10:45 AM