Lauderdale County District Attorney
★ Recognized as District Attorney of the Year by the Alabama District Attorneys Investigators Association.
★ Helped establish One Place of the Shoals Family Justice Center (Opened November 2014)
★ Successfully prosecuted the first elder exploitation case in the State of Alabama. (State v William "Slick" Johnson)
★ Partnered with Safeplace to establish first Domestic Violence Unit in the Shoals.
★ Obtained first death penalty conviction in Lauderdale County since reinstatement of death penalty (State v David Riley – Capital Murder of Scott Kirtley)
★ Worked to expand Drug Court in Lauderdale County.
★ Partnered with courts and volunteer organizations to establish anti-litter program – “Assign a Highway” program.
Information about District Attorney Chris Connolly
Now in his fourth term as District Attorney, Chris was first elected in November 2004, taking office in January 2005. He was re-elected, without opposition in 2010, in 2016, and in 2022.
Chris began his legal career in 1987 as a law clerk in the Lauderdale County Circuit Court, working for Judges Ed Tease and Mike Suttle.
In 1988, Chris joined the law firm of O'Bannon and O'Bannon. He practiced law with Stewart O'Bannon Jr. and Stewart O'Bannon III handling civil and criminal cases for a wide variety of clients until his election as District Attorney in November 2004.
In 2018, Chris was recognized as District Attorney of the Year by the Alabama District Attorneys Investigators Association.
In August 2020, Chris was elected by his fellow District Attorneys to serve a one-year term as the President of the Alabama District Attorneys Association.
As a lawyer, Chris obtained an AV rating from the national attorney ranking organization, Martindale-Hubbell. This is the organization's highest ranking and indicates very high to preeminent legal ability and very high ethical standards as established by confidential opinions from members of the Bar.
Chris served as President of the Lauderdale County Bar Association in 1992. While president, he organized having the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals come to Florence to hear oral arguments in two capital murder case appeals. Area high school students attended this event and were able to see Alabama's appellate court system in action.
Law School -
Chris is a 1987 graduate of the The University of Alabama Law School. Chris worked his way through law school as a warrant magistrate for the City of Tuscaloosa and Tuscaloosa County. As a magistrate he issued arrest warrants for crime victims and police investigators.
While in law school, Chris managed the school's international law moot court team. The team won the Southeast Regional Competition in Gainesville, Florida, and went on to compete in the National Competition in Boston.
Chris graduated from Auburn University in 1984 with a business degree. While at Auburn, Chris worked in the cooperative education program at Martin Industries in Florence. He also worked part-time pumping gas at Mr. Friendly's in Auburn, as well as at the school library.
High School -
Chris graduated from Coffee High School in 1979. While in high school, Chris worked at G&C Supermarket in downtown St. Florian. He also worked a summer job at the Florence Electricity Department.
Chris believes that it is important for the elected District Attorney to be in the courtroom trying cases. He has a track record of success prosecuting cases ranging from Capital Murder to DUI. Under Chris' leadership, the Lauderdale County District Attorney's Office has an active partnership with law enforcement to ensure that we have quality prosecutions of all cases in our County.
"Getting justice for victims of violent crimes is one of the most rewarding aspects of this job." – Chris Connolly
Chris is President of the Board of Directors of One Place of the Shoals Family Justice Center. One Place opened in November 2014 as only the second family justice center in the State of Alabama.
Chris serves on the Board of Directors of Lauderdale County Drug Task Force and Lauderdale County Community Corrections Board. He has served on the board of directors of the Cramer Children’s Center, Rape Response, and Big Brothers/Big Sisters of the Shoals.