After months of speculation, and some political intrigue, longtime deputy Dario Broccolino was announced yesterday as Howard County's new state's attorney.
Broccolino's 36-year career in law enforcement, including 17 years as a prosecutor in Baltimore and nine years as deputy state's attorney in Howard, was mentioned by the three circuit judges who unanimously chose him, said Judge Lenore R. Gelfman, who led the selection.
Broccolino, 63, took over as interim state's attorney in December when Timothy J. McCrone resigned to accept a Circuit Court judgeship appointment.
"He has a tremendous amount of experience, and he brings continuity," Gelfman said of Broccolino.
"I'm obviously pleased with the selection, " Broccolino said, adding that it is too soon to say whether he would run for election to the post in 2010.
The events leading to the selection were anything but routine.
Broccolino did not apply for the permanent job until the final day of an extended application period, and he faced formidable political odds. McCrone and Howard County Executive Ken Ulman, both Democrats, favored another county prosecutor, Lara C. Weathersbee, a 13-year veteran of the office who heads the juvenile division.
Yesterday, Broccolino said he decided to apply after serving as interim state's attorney.
"I saw things I could do - improvements I could make," he said.
Yesterday, Weathersbee, 39, congratulated her colleague.
"I'm happy for Dario, and I hope he will serve the office well," said Weathersbee, who is the daughter of Anne Arundel County State's Attorney Frank Weathersbee.
Broccolino in turn said, "It wouldn't surprise me if she would be in this position in the not too distant future."