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County chooses David Jones as next state’s attorney

David Jones has been offered the job of Grand Forks County State's Attorney. Jones, an assistant state's attorney with about 35 years of experience in the field, will replace Peter Welte if he accepts the offer. Welte has held the position for mo...

David Jones has been offered the job of Grand Forks County State's Attorney.

Jones, an assistant state's attorney with about 35 years of experience in the field, will replace Peter Welte if he accepts the offer.

Welte has held the position for more than a decade and Jones would take over Feb. 2.

The Grand Forks County Commission unanimously chose Jones at a meeting Friday because of his many years of experience and managerial skills.

"Based on his maturity and his experience he has had in the states attorney's office and other leadership roles he's had, I feel he would be the best choice," Commissioner Cynthia Pic said.

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Jones was commissioned as a military officer in 1976 and served as lead legal advisor for a regional nuclear incident control team before going on to assist members of the military and their families in legal matters as well.

During his interview, Jones stressed his storied years of experience in the field and good relationship with area judiciary officials. He said while there would be a learning curve to accepting the job, he has a lot of experience in different areas of the law.

"We're all trying to do what's best for the citizens in Grand Forks County," he said.

Jones also suggested, along with a couple of other job candidates, developing a mentorship program.

"I want to have everybody as comfortable as possible in the office but I also think we need to shuffle it because we've got good senior prosecutors who need to be teaming up with our youngsters," he said.

Commissioner Tom Falk has known Jones professionally for many years and said Jones "has the respect of everyone I know of in that office."

Carmell Mattison, Haley Wamstad and Jason McCarthy also interviewed for the position.

Jones' salary is still being negotiated.

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