Angela Alsobrooks is taking on one of the most colossal challenges of her life as she begins her tenure as Prince George’s County state’s attorney. The history-making election has Alsobrooks chomping at the bit to begin her work.

In September, Alsobrooks became the first African-American woman elected to the state’s attorney position in Prince George’s County. For many, the distinction would bring additional pressure, but Alsobrooks is buoyed by the achievement.

“I’ve worked pretty hard to get here actually so no additional pressure,” she said. “I’ll do what I’ve always done. There’s no substitute for work ethic. As hard as I’ve worked to get here I’ll work at least that hard now that I’m here.”

The state’s attorney position also requires Alsobrooks to show residents she’s serious about prosecuting criminals. Newly minted County Executive Rushern Baker has already made changes within the police department in attempts to show residents there will be more accountability and improved police performance. Alsobrooks hopes to win over skeptical residents in a similar way.

“We will be firm, we will be fair and we will be consistent in the way that we prosecute these cases,” she said. “I speak not only from the standpoint of a prosecutor, but I am a lifelong resident of Prince George’s County. I believe that people’s quality of life really hinges on what happens with public safety. I appreciate that and take it very seriously.”

That being said, Alsobrooks plans to implement additional changes and cited her predecessor, Glenn Ivey, for laying a solid foundation. One of those areas will be with mortgage fraud, where the county state’s attorney’s office has been a model for other Maryland jurisdictions.

Alsobrooks said her biggest undertaking may be creating an atmosphere where residents respect and understand what she’s trying to do.

“There’s a program already in place called Community in the Courthouse once a month and we have discussions with large segments of the community,” she said.

“We interact with community leaders. We hear their concerns and provide them with information regarding crime trends. We find it to be a very mutually beneficial relationship.”

Now that she’s officially been sworn in, Alsobrooks will roll into her new position with an unmatched fervor. She says she’s ecstatic to finally begin her work as state’s attorney.

“I am enthusiastic about the opportunity that’s in front of me,” Alsobrooks said. “I am anxious to get going. We have lots of great ideas that I’ve had a chance to discuss over the last couple of years and now its time to implement those ideas.”

 

George Barnette

Special to the AFRO