Chief Denver Deputy District Attorney Mitch Morrissey, campaigning on his years of service as a career prosecutor, won an election yesterday to become Denver’s next District Attorney. He will succeed term-limited Bill Ritter, who strongly endorsed Morrissey, calling him a “consummate prosecutor.” Morrissey defeated Beth McCann and John Walsh. Although Morrissey won only the Democratic primary, there are no Republicans to challenge him in the general election.
A key issue in the race was police shootings. Morrissey has proposed using an “open grand jury,” similar to the current grand juries that meet behind closed doors. Under his proposal, the public could watch the grand juries review evidence. However, no law authorizes open grand juries in Colorado. Morrissey is considered a national DNA expert and has tried many rape and murder cases in his 20 years at the DA’s office.