Allen Swaim, Wendell attorney, makes bid for DA seat

mhankerson@newsobserver.comFebruary 25, 2014 

— Local attorney Allen Swaim filed for election to the Wake County District Attorney’s seat.

The announcment puts him in a race with current employees in the District Attorney's office.

Currently, Swaim is a lawyer at the Wendell-based Swaim Law practice. He handles cases in Wake, Johnston, Nash, Franklin, Wilson and Durham counties.

Before that, Swaim dabbled in different business ventures including electrical heating and air conditioning business.

His experience as a businessman will be one thing that he says helps him bring a new approach to the District Attorney position.

“I believe we must … run our court system in a way that maximizes resources, streamlines services and creates a more customer-friendly atmosphere,” Swaim said in a statement announcing his candidacy. “I want to ensure that the citizen with an ordinary traffic matter is greeted courteously, served promptly and treated with the respect you deserve.”

One of Swaim's goals is to create a District Attorney's office that can move through cases fairly and efficiently in order to keep costs down.

“(Swaim’s) background as a small business owner who provides excellent service to his clients will enable him to bring a customer-focused mentality to the courthouse,” the release said.

Although Swaim's focus on customer service may set him apart from his opponents, he does face steep competition.

Senior assistant District Attorney Jeff Cruden is officially part of the race, according to the North Carolina State Board of Elections as are assistant District Attorneys Jefferson Griffin and Boz Zellinger.

Wake County's current Clerk of Court, Nancy Lorrin Freeman, is also officially part of the race.

The four candidates are vying for a seat that’s been filled for almost 30 years by Colon Willoughby, the current DA. He announced in January he would not seek re-election.

Candidate filing for the position ends Feb. 28 and voters will elect the new DA Nov. 4.

Hankerson: 919-829-4826; Twitter: @easternwakenews

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