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Two circuit judges appointed
Two circuit judges OK'd by assembly


Date published: 2/22/2007

RICHMOND--

State lawmakers have appointed new judges to two Circuit Court seats in the Fredericksburg region.

David H. Beck, currently a Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court judge, and Gordon F. Willis, currently a General District Court judge, were both elected to the 15th Judicial Circuit Court for eight-year terms.

They'll replace retiring Circuit Court judges H. Harrison Braxton Jr. in Stafford County and Ann Hunter Simpson in Spotsylvania. Braxton has already retired, while Simpson will step down June 30.

The local bar association had endorsed Beck, but gave its other endorsement to Joseph J. Ellis, also a Juvenile and Domestic Relations judge.

Willis had also been interviewed by the bar association, along with a fourth candidate, Sarah Deneke. .

But the ultimate decision on judges lies with legislators, and local lawmakers chose to back Willis over Ellis.

They'll take their new positions July 1, leaving vacant their seats in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations and General District courts.

Those will be filled by the General Assembly later this week.

Deneke, currently a prosecutor in Stafford, and Phillip Fines, a prosecutor in Fredericksburg, have been nominated for the open judgeships--Deneke for the General District Court and Fines for the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court.

Chelyen Davis: 804/782-9362
Email: cdavis@freelancestar.com