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Lee County's Prosecutor Retiring After Nearly 40 Years

Jason Parrott
Lee County Attorney Mike Short said the time is right for him to step down, after serving the county for roughly four decades.

Lee County Attorney Mike Short submitted to the county his letter of resignation Tuesday morning. He said the time has come for him to retire.

“I’m 66, I’ve been here 40 years, it’s time to move on,” said Short. “There comes a time when you know, and I have reached that point.”

Short wrote in his letter that his final day will be February 10, but his last day in the office will be January 31.

“I have not had two weeks’ vacation in the same year in the 40 years that I have worked for the county, so I will be on vacation from January 31, 2017 to February 10, 2017,” he said.

Short started working for the Lee County Attorney’s office in 1976. He was appointed to the top spot in 1978.

Short said being a prosecutor has always given him a sense of purpose, though he did step away for about a year to work in private practice.

“I tried defense work, not really cut out for it,” said Short. “I won a trial or two and decided I really didn’t like getting guilty people off. I really didn’t like that.”

Short said he will spend his final weeks in office tying up loose ends for his successor, who the county board will appoint to serve the remaining two years in Short’s term. That person could come from Short’s office or from outside of county government.

Short said he will not make a recommendation.

He said he is very thankful to the people of Lee County for giving him the opportunity to serve them the past four decades.

“I have always had an undying trust in the goodness of people in this county,” said Short. “Believing that they wanted justice, not convictions, and I don’t think I have ever been disappointed.”

Jason Parrott is a former reporter at Tri States Public Radio.