Deschutes County’s next judge will likely be longtime area prosecutor Beth Bagley.
Bagley, 38, defeated attorney Andy Balyeat to replace Deschutes County Circuit Court Judge Michael Sullivan, who has served on the bench since 1988 and is retiring. Her term will start in January.
“I’m cautiously optimistic given the preliminary results,” Bagley said. “I’m proud of the race and campaign that I ran, and I’m grateful for the support of all the voters who voted for me.”
Bagley said she will wind down her work as a prosecutor in the coming months.
“I just hope to be the ultimate public servant for the people of Deschutes County,” she said.
“I hope to be the kind of person whose door is open, who will work hard and long and do my best to give the best service as a judge, and give to the community. And I hope to do that for a very long time.”
Bagley has 15 years of experience as an attorney, mostly as a supervising attorney and senior prosecutor with the Deschutes County District Attorney’s Office. She is probably best known for successfully prosecuting the Darrell Middlekauff murder trial.
She has also served on the Bend-La Pine School Board since she was appointed in 2008. She said she probably will submit a letter of resignation for her board position this week, but will continue to volunteer in schools and with the Education Foundation for Bend-La Pine Schools.
Both candidates had touted their experience: Bagley as a prosecutor with countless hours in the courthouse and in trial, Balyeat as a civil attorney who has practiced in a wide range of areas.
Balyeat, a senior partner with Balyeat & Eager and an attorney for 26 years, congratulated Bagley on a well-run campaign.
“She was a very tough opponent, she fought hard and ran a good campaign,” he said. “I think she’ll be a great judge.”