Veteran attorney Kenneth P. Thompson is preparing to usher in a new era in the King County (Brooklyn) District Attorney’s office after scoring a historic victory over incumbent district attorney Charles J. Hynes.
In October 2012 Thompson entered the race for district attorney. At the time he was perhaps best known as the attorney for Nafissatou Diallo, the New York woman, who accused Dominique Strauss-Kahn the former head of the International Monetary Fund of sexual assault.
Hynes was first elected to the District Attorney’s office in 1989.
Thompson a 1992 graduate of New York University School of Law is a founding partner of the law firm Thompson Wigdor. In addition to his wide-ranging experience in private practice, Thompson has also served as an assistant district attorney for the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and as an attorney for the Treasury Department.
The New York Times characterized the district attorney’s race in this way:
The primary followed a fierce race that often seemed more a referendum on Mr. Hynes’s lengthy record than a choice between two candidates. Though Mr. Hynes had faced serious and sometimes divided opposition before, this year’s race pitted the 78-year-old district attorney against a single well-financed candidate who rallied anti-Hynes sentiment in the borough. Mr. Thompson, 47, used a torrent of negative publicity about prosecutorial behavior in Mr. Hynes’s office to paint the incumbent as unethical and out of touch.
With 99 percent of precincts reporting, Mr. Thompson had 55 percent of the vote.
Thompson’s win may have come with the help of some big celebrity backers.
Singer and actress Mary J. Blige tweeted:
— Mary J. Blige (@maryjblige) September 5, 2013
Hip hop pioneer and mogul Russell Simmons also showed his support:
— Russell Simmons (@UncleRUSH) September 9, 2013
After his primary night defeat Hynes tweeted thanks to the citizens of Brooklyn.
— Charles J. Hynes (@HynesForDA) September 11, 2013
Thompson too tweeted his appreciation for the opportunity to serve.
Thank you, Brooklyn! I am humbled and honored to serve as your next District Attorney.
— Ken Thompson (@KenThompson4DA) September 11, 2013
Thompson is expected to win the general election in November.
More reading: Charles Hynes’ dramatic rise and fall — a retrospective of the borough’s soon to be former top prosecutor
Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes will have a ‘classy’ exit after being defeated in Democratic primary by Kenneth Thompson
For Hynes, history of making Brooklyn safer wasn’t enough to survive
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