Ex-Patrick prosecutor named to federal post

Staff Report

A former commonwealth attorney in Patrick County, Virginia, has become the United States attorney for the Western District of Virginia.

Anthony P. Giorno was named to that post by U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, according to Virginia media reports.

The U.S. attorney is the top federal law enforcement officer in the Western District of Virginia, which includes Patrick and Carroll counties and covers about 60 percent of the state’s land area as a whole.

Giorno had been filling that role on an acting basis since Jan. 1, replacing the former U.S. attorney for the district who resigned to enter private practice.

A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Giorno had joined the Patrick County Commonwealth’s Office in 1978 as an assistant prosecutor.

It was while serving in that capacity that Giorno led the successful prosecution of a Mount Airy man, Dennis Stockton, during Stockton’s capital murder trial in Stuart in 1983. Stockton was convicted of killing Kenneth Arnder, another Surry County resident, and later was executed for the crime that is said to have occurred in Kibler Valley.

Giorno was elected Patrick’s commonwealth’s attorney in 1984 and served until 1995, and also was the county attorney during much of that time.

In 1995, he became an assistant U.S. attorney in the Western District’s Roanoke office.

Giorno served as civil chief for that district from 2005-2009, according to its Website, primarily defending medical malpractice cases.

He was appointed first assistant in May 2009. During his tenure, Giorno prosecuted a variety of cases, including white-collar fraud and capital murder. In addition to his administrative and case responsibilities, he has served as the district’s Human Trafficking Task Force coordinator.

Giorno is a graduate of Marshall-Wythe School of Law at the College of William and Mary.

Staff Report

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