DA Fires Longtime Prosecutor, Names New Claiborne Lead

Eighth Judicial District Attorney General Lori Phillips-Jones has fired Jared Effler, a 14-year prosecutor in the district who is challenging her in the Aug. 7 DA race, Knoxnews reports. The firing occurred Friday after Effler held a campaign event and received a key endorsement Thursday night. Phillips-Jones said the campaign event and endorsement had nothing to do with her decision but that the move was “in the best interests of the office” since Effler had asked for 60 days of paid leave to campaign. “We have a lot of courts to cover and a lot of work. I didn’t feel I could accommodate that request,” she said. Effler said he would establish a private practice and continue to campaign. Also on Monday, Phillips-Jones named David Ballard with the Campbell County firm of Basista, Balloff and Pollard as Effler's replacement as lead prosecutor in Claiborne County.