We’ll miss Jeremy Hayes

Scott Ballard District Attorney

October 23, 2013

It’s a great privilege to love your job. And there is much to love about this one.

I love trials. I love the atmosphere around the four courthouses. I love the opportunity to visit schools and speak to civic clubs. I love the chance to assist law enforcement as they protect all of us.

But, most of all, I love the people that I work with.

People that work in an emergency room are unique. So are construction workers that walk on skyscraper beams high in the sky. And submarine crews. And coal miners. And teachers in inner-city schools.

Folks that excel in a prosecutor’s office have unique traits, too. They love their communities. They are driven to see that the right result occurs. They multi-task and juggle large volumes of work. They confront the clash between good and evil on a daily basis. And they win.

It’s fun to watch as they help each other, cheer for each other, laugh together. I enjoy the teamwork when we’re busy—almost overwhelmed—and it appears that nothing can stop us.

And when there is an emergency—an abused child needs us, a senseless killing occurs and law enforcement needs our help, or a last-minute glitch threatens to disrupt a trial—these men and women rise to the occasion. Every time.

That’s why it hurts so bad when I lose one of them.

Today, we’re losing Jeremy Hayes. He is one of the Fayetteville prosecutors. Tomorrow he will start a job in a new city with a private law firm.

We hired Jeremy about five years ago when he graduated from law school. He was waiting to see if he had passed the Bar exam. I thought he was special when I interviewed him.

Over the years I watched him grow. I celebrated when he passed the Bar. I went to his wedding. I’ve watched him advise law enforcement officers, work tirelessly on wiretap orders to catch drug dealers, help with the drug court, handle very complex appeals, and convict armed robbers and child molesters and drug dealers at trial.

He is brilliant. He is humble. He is level-headed and fair. He relentlessly and courageously pursues what he thinks is right and encourages others to do the same.

In short, Jeremy Hayes is a Christian man who practices law with a drive to serve.

And when the practice of law is a part of your Christian mission, you go where you are called. We all know that. We wish him the best. And we thank him for all he has done while he was here.

It is great to work with people like that.