The Honorable Andrew J. McDonald, chair of the Criminal Justice Commission, announced today that the commission has appointed John J. Russotto as acting chief state’s attorney.

Attorney Russotto was appointed to serve as acting chief state’s attorney effective upon the retirement of Chief State’s Attorney Richard J. Colangelo Jr. of Easton on March 31. Russotto will fulfill the duties of chief state’s attorney beginning April 1, until the commission has appointed a successor to complete the five-year term to which Chief State’s Attorney Colangelo was reappointed in June 2021.

“As Chairman of this commission, I want to thank Chief State’s Attorney Colangelo for his service to the state for almost three decades,” Justice McDonald said. “Those of us who have served with him on this commission have often heard him say to candidates who want to be appointed young prosecutors that as they approach such an important position, the only thing he expects them to do is the right thing. I want to thank Mr. Colangelo for doing the right thing today under very difficult circumstances.”

Russotto’s appointment was approved by the Criminal Justice Commission at a meeting held on Wednesday at the Office of the Chief State’s Attorney in Rocky Hill. Russotto has served as deputy chief state’s attorney for personnel, finance and administration since 2004. 

Established pursuant to Article XXIII of the Connecticut Constitution, the Criminal Justice Commission is responsible for the appointment of all state prosecutors in Connecticut. In addition to Justice McDonald, associate justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court, its membership includes Appellate Court Judge Melanie L. Cradle, attorneys Robert M. Berke, Reginald Dwayne Betts, Scott J. Murphy, Moy N. Ogilvie and the chief state’s attorney.

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