Highland County commissioners on Wednesday gave the go-ahead for Highland County Prosecuting Attorney Anneka Collins to bring on another assistant prosecuting attorney. We think that’s a good decision.
Collins’ office is one of the smallest of its kind in Ohio. In a county currently in the throes of what amounts to a methamphetamine craze — and one still reeling from the opioid crisis that peaked two years ago — having a small group of overworked prosecutors does not always allow a proactive approach to justice.
Don’t get us wrong. Collins and her two assistants, Molly Bolek and Jim Roeder, have done an excellent job keeping the peace here. But currently, Collins herself almost single-handedly covers a gargantuan criminal caseload in Highland County Common Pleas Court, while Bolek and Roeder are left to handle child support, juvenile delinquency, Children Services, and municipal and probate matters.
The drug-related criminal caseload in Highland County courts is sky high. So, too, is the number of children being removed from homes due to drug and other illicit activity. The side effects of drug abuse truly bleed into all areas of the law. Tack on rising levels of delinquent taxes, and you begin to see the merits of adding another assistant to Collins’ office.
Commissioners have allocated $40,000 per year for the position. We believe that’s a small price to pay for maintaining a robust judicial system in Highland County. We applaud the commissioners for their choice and wish Anneka Collins the best of luck in selecting a qualified and aggressive assistant prosecuting attorney.