By Ashley Benkarski
NASHVILLE, TN — Assistant U.S. Attorney Sara Beth Myers, a civil rights attorney with experience at the local, state and federal levels, is one of three candidates running in the upcoming Democratic primary for the position of District Attorney General.
Incumbent DA Glenn Funk is hoping to retain his seat against Myers, who entered into the race last December, and former assistant DA Danielle Nellis. Funk has been in the role since 2014.
Myers said her vision for the DA’s office rests on three pillars working in harmony: restorative justice, crime prevention, and civil rights.
“For nonviolent crimes there are many solutions that don’t require incarceration,” Myers said. She also wants to focus on bail reform, an issue she feels has been swept under the rug in conversations regarding criminal justice issues, especially when it comes to class division.
“It’s simply not fair for a rich person to be charged with the same crime as a poor person, but the poor person is stuck in jail while the rich person can bail out. The waits have been increasing substantially,” she explained.
Myers added that prosecutors must push for cases not just for the defendant’s sake but also for the victim. Myers considers herself a “champion for victim’s rights.”
Myers said Funk’s handling of the shooting death of Daniel Hambrick by Metro Nashville police officer Andrew Delke was fumbled from the beginning and that Hambrick’s family should not have been blindsided by the DA’s decision to grant Delke a plea deal that drastically reduced his sentence.
“That is simply not how you treat the people you’re serving. A prosecutor is a public servant first,” Myers remarked.
Myers noted that if elected, she’d cultivate trust with Nashville’s “hurting, victimized community” through direct interaction with her office by assigning existing ADAs to every police precinct in Davidson County “so that they get to understand the neighborhoods they’re serving.”
Further, Myers said she would name individuals that not only look like those they serve, but who also have similar life experiences– specifically, more women and people of color, adding diversity to the abysmally homogenous ranks of DA offices statewide.
DA offices in Tennessee’s major cities lack diversity—those and other administrative positions are primarily held by white officeholders.
For more information on Myers’ campaign for Nashville’s DA visit myersforda.com, @SaraBethMyers on Twitter, or @myersforda on Instagram.
Early voting for the Democratic primary begins April 13 and ends April 28, with voting day taking place May 3, 2022.
For voting information visit nashville.gov.