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Arbitrator named new Williamson County prosecutor

September 8, 2014

MARION, Ill. (AP) — An Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission arbitrator was sworn in Monday as the new Williamson County state’s attorney, making it the first time the southern Illinois county has had a new top prosecutor in 30 years.

Williamson County State’s Attorney Charles Garnati last week announced his resignation was effective Monday. The Williamson County Board held a special meeting Monday morning and nominated Johnston City native Brandon Zanotti to the position. Zanotti then took the oath for the office.

Zanotti was Garnati’s recommendation to fill his position, WSIU radio reported (http://bit.ly/YqHEfp ).

“Everything can always use some improvement, and that’s one thing this week, and really over the coming weeks, I’m going to be looking at, to see what we can do to modernize and what we can do to move the office forward,” Zanotti said.

The county has several important murder cases in the next year and a new prosecutor was needed as soon as a possible, said Williamson County Commissioner Brent Gentry.

Zanotti previously specialized in workers’ compensation cases at a private firm. He also was congressional clerk to U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin. He graduated from Southern Illinois University with a finance degree and earned his law degree from Washington University School of Law.

Garnati resigned because of health issue. He plans to open a private practice and have a lighter case load.

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Information from: WSIU-FM.

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