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One of Macon's top veteran prosecutors resigns

"Every gang in Macon is celebrating tonight because they know that their biggest threat is gone,” said former DA David Cooke.

MACON, Ga. — One of Macon’s senior prosecutors says she's leaving the district attorney’s office.

Sandra Matson, the Chief of Court Operations at the Macon District Attorney’s office, confirmed to 13WMAZ that she turned in her resignation letter Monday.

Matson has been with the office since 1994. When asked why she’s deciding to resign, she declined to comment.

Macon politicians reacted to Matson’s resignation Monday.

“I’m disappointed that Ms. Matson has left the DA’s office. She’s been a great partner with the sheriff’s office with prosecuting cases over the years. I wish her the very best and we hope to maintain a similar relationship with whoever we’re working with at the DA’s office moving forward,” said Sheriff David Davis.

Former DA David Cooke also told 13WMAZ that he “can’t imagine a bigger hit to the office.” Cooke says Matson was aggressive in prosecuting some of Macon’s most violent criminals over her over 25 years with the office. 

He says Matson has the skill of understanding and contextualizing crime among Macon’s gangs.

“This is an incalculable loss for the office,” said Cooke. “No one did more to hold criminal street gangs accountable than Sandy Matson. Her institutional knowledge and trial skills are not something that can be restored in one hire or one year. Every gang in Macon is celebrating tonight because they know that their biggest threat is gone.”

Matson’s resignation comes after multiple assistant district attorneys have exited the office.

13WMAZ sent the following questions to current Macon DA Anita Reynolds Howard:

  • Why is Sandy Matson resigning?
  • How many ADAs have left the Macon District Attorney's Office since January?
  • How many ADAs have been hired since January?
  • How many ADAs is the District Attorney's Office looking at hiring?
  • Does District Attorney Howard have any comment on Matson's resignation and the loss this is to the office given that she's been with the office since 1994?

We received the following statement in return:

“As the District Attorney we must prepare and be ready for change. We appreciate Ms. Sandra Matson’s dedication to the Macon Judicial Circuit for the last 26 years and wish her well in her future endeavors. Our office has actively been recruiting and hiring the best talent to fulfill the vision to Change the Face of Justice by promoting equitable outcomes for all. The Wheels of Justice will continue to turn in the Macon Judicial Circuit.”

In September, we reported that six prosecutors in the Macon District Attorney’s office turned in their resignations.

Those prosecutors included Eric Edwards, Brian Granger, Rodrigo Silva, Mike Smith, and former Macon DA Greg Winters. All moved back to the Houston Judicial Circuit after leaving the circuit in 2020.

Edwards announced in September that he plans to put his hat in the ring to replace former Houston DA George Hartwig after his retirement became effective in early September.

Monday's statement from the DA's office says they hired five additional ADAs, as of Sept. 1.

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