BREAKING NEWS: Meet the New Augusta County Circuit Court Judge!
Updated: Feb 27
Written by: Sam Orlando
Photo Credit: Valley Mission
After a period of absence by Augusta County Circuit Court Judge Chapman Goodwin, a local attorney reported to Breaking Through News that rumors were circulating about the Judge's potential retirement. Breaking Through News began closely monitoring the actions of the Courts of Justice Committee in the Virginia House of Delegates and the Judiciary Committee in the Virginia Senate to stay informed of potential nominations.
Breaking Through had also received reports from a law enforcement source that a Judgeship was open, and that Augusta County Commonwealth's Attorney Timothy Martin was jockeying for the position, though his name never appeared in any documents before the General Assembly. Two names did surface on a hearing notice for judicial interviews released prior to Feb. 21, and both candidates were from Waynesboro. Breaking Through found that Shannon T. Sherrill and the Honorable Correy Smith, a Judge in the Waynesboro Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court, had both been listed as candidates. It appears only Mr. Sherrill actually interviewed with the Committees.
On February 21, 2023, judicial interviews were conducted in the House Courts of Justice Committee and the Senate Judiciary Committee. You can watch the interviews at the bottom of this story.
Delegates John Avoli and Chris Runion introduced Shannon T. Sherrill, currently the Assistant Commonwealth Attorney in Waynesboro, as the "consensus candidate" from the local lawmakers to fill an open Judgeship in the 25th judicial district, which includes Augusta County. Mr. Sherrill told the Delegates and Senators that he had previously clerked for two Circuit Court Judges. He said that he believed he had the necessary abilities for the position, citing he had the "intellectual abilities, work ethic, and the temperament" that would be required. Sherrill received one question from the panel of lawmakers. Delegate Terry Kilgore, (R) Gate City, pointed out that Mr. Sherrill was 48 years old, and would likely serve on the bench for some time. Kilgore cautioned the new Judge to be careful not to get burnt out in his new role.
During his interview, Mr. Sherrill spoke of his extensive experience in the practice of law, having worked most recently as a senior prosecutor in Waynesboro. He also mentioned his education that took him from a small town in Southeast Alaska (where Sherrill served in the Coast Guard) to the law school at Washington and Lee University.
Mr. Sherrill was wished luck in his future work and the Committees recommended his election. It is interesting to note that throughout this process, most of the citizens of Augusta County had no idea that a Judgeship was even open. Breaking Through News confirmed through Senator Creigh Deeds' office that the Senate voted (40-0), and the House voted (98-0) to approve Mr. Sherrill as Augusta County's newest Circuit Court Judge on February 22, 2023.
As the newest Circuit Court Judge, Mr. Sherrill will be tasked with upholding the law and protecting the rights of all citizens in the county. He brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the bench and is expected to serve the community with integrity, fairness, and impartiality.
Mr. Sherrill will officially become His Honor on July 1, 2023.
Breaking Through News is excited to break the news of Augusta County's newest Circuit Court Judge. As Mr. Sherrill assumes his new role, Breaking Through will continue to monitor developments and provide updates as we discover them.
Congratulations to Shannon T. Sherrill on his confirmation as the new Augusta County Circuit Court Judge.