District Attorney Office Staff Picture

District Attorney General
Dave Clark

Dave is a native of Anderson County and obtained his bachelor’s, MBA and law degrees from the University of Tennessee.  He practiced law privately in Nashville and then in Anderson County after establishing his own firm.  Dave successfully served two terms as the part-time elected County Attorney for Anderson County.

Dave was elected District Attorney General in 2006 and again in 2014 on a platform of making our community safer.  As District Attorney General, he has managed a criminal justice system that has seen a 43% reduction in crime.  He founded a children’s advocacy center for child victims of physical and sexual abuse and has combated violent criminals, gangs and drug dealers.   He has managed millions of dollars in public funds with ten consecutive clear annual financial audits.

Dave is married to Magistrate Judge Josephine Clark and they have two adult children.  In his spare time, he enjoys traveling, hunting and marksmanship.

Deputy District Attorney General
Anthony “Tony” Craighead

Criminal Court

Tony is a ’92 graduate of the Nashville School of Law. He then began his career in the 13th Judicial District. He served as acting District Attorney from 2006-2008. In 2014 he came to work for General Clark in the 7th Judicial District as Deputy District Attorney. Tony has been married to Ann for 31 years. They have two children. He enjoys theater, running and the Atlanta Braves.

Assistant District Attorney General
Victoria “Vickie” Bannach

General Sessions Court Division II, Oak Ridge and Juvenile Court

After graduating from Appalachian School of Law, Victoria began her career as an Assistant District Attorney General in 2005. She prosecutes a variety of cases from traffic offenses to homicide. In her spare time Victoria enjoys basketball and the UK Wildcats.

Assistant District Attorney General
Emily Faye Abbott

Criminal Court, Juvenile Court, Oliver Springs City Court

Emily Faye Abbott has been an Assistant District Attorney with the State of Tennessee since January 2007. She is a graduate of Vanderbilt University and the University Of Tennessee College Of Law. She enjoys hiking and the outdoors.

Assistant District Attorney General
Ryan Spitzer

Criminal Court

Ryan is a 2003 graduate of the Vanderbilt Law School.  He has served as an Assistant District Attorney since 2007 and is the Prosecutor for the 7th Judicial District Crime Task Force.  Ryan enjoys restoring cars and is a lifelong gun enthusiast.

Assistant District Attorney General
Virginia Walsh

General Sessions Court Division I, Clinton, Traffic Court

Virginia Walsh has worked as an Assistant District Attorney General for the Tennessee District Attorney General’s Conference since 2006.  Virginia primarily works in General Sessions Court.  In her spare time, Virginia enjoys hiking and attending musical theater.

Assistant District Attorney General
Melissa Denny, DUI Prosecutor

Criminal Court, General Sessions Court, Division I & II

Melissa graduated from Albright College and the University of Tennessee College of Law. In 2007, she was hired as the district’s DUI prosecutor. Melissa prosecutes alcohol and drug-related traffic offenses in the General Sessions and Criminal Courts. In her spare time, she enjoys taking road trips and discovering new places.

Victim/Witness Coordinator
Katherine Sellers

Criminal Court

Katherine joined the District Attorney General’s Office in 2009. In addition to her role as Assistant Victim/Witness Coordinator in General Sessions Court Division I, Katherine also serves as the Administrative Manager for 7th Judicial District Crime Task Force.  As the Administrative Manager, Katherine is responsible for the processing and administrations of all grant requirements and financial records as well as day-to- day administrative tasks.

Asst. Victim/Witness Coordinator
Caitlin “Madison” Cook

General Sessions Division I – Clinton

Madison interned with our office in 2014 and then began her career with us in 2015. She is a graduate of Pellissippi State Community College, earning her Associates Degree in Paralegal Studies. She continued her education with King University and obtained her Bachelors of Science Degree in Criminal Justice with distinction. Madison enjoys spending time with her family, watching Tennessee football, and monogramming.

Asst. Victim/Witness Coordinator
Sydney King

General Sessions Division II – Oak Ridge

Sydney has a B.A. in Sociology with a concentration in Criminology and Criminal Justice from the University of Tennessee. During her time at UT, she completed internships with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and the United States Marshal Service. Sydney joined this office in February of 2017, after previously working for United States Probation in Knoxville. In her spare time, she enjoys reading and yoga.

Asst. Victim/Witness Coordinator
Rhoni Standefer

General Sessions Division I & II – Domestic Violence

Rhoni Standefer comes from Knoxville, TN where she lives with her husband, Grant.   She has previous experience working with victims, as well as in the court system after serving 16 years as a Rape Crisis Counselor in Texas and New Mexico.  Rhoni and Grant have three grown children, Brooke Akin, Zach Standefer and Bonni McDonald.

Criminal Investigator
Robert “Bobby Joe” Higgs

Bobby Joe is a decorated Marine Corps combat veteran and has served as a law enforcement officer for more than 40 years.  He is a graduate of the DEA and FBI academies and is a former under cover narcotics officer and detective.  In addition to his current duties, Bobby Joe serves as a police chaplain.  In his spare time he enjoys hunting and fishing.