Queens DA Katz creates new prosecutorial division, announces senior-level appointments

Queens DA Melinda Katz announces a new prosecutorial division led by the former acting DA of Nassau County and appointments to her executive staff. (QNS file photo)

Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced the creation of a new division in her office dedicated to investigating and prosecuting criminals who prey on society’s most vulnerable.

The Special Prosecutions Division, comprised of the Special Victims and Domestic Violence Bureaus and the Juvenile Prosecutions Unit, will be led by newly appointed Executive Assistant District Attorney Joyce Smith, a veteran prosecutor and former acting district attorney of Nassau County, where she managed more than 450 attorneys, investigators and administrative staff, and overseeing the prosecution of more than 30,000 cases a year and a budget of more than $50 million.

“Launching the new Special Prosecutions Division and putting it in the very capable hands of EADA Smith marks an important moment in the history of the office of the Queens district attorney,” Katz said. “I look forward to the important work she and the Special Prosecutions team will be doing on behalf of the people of Queens.”

Smith most recently served as executive assistant district attorney in Manhattan where she led its newly created Special Victims Division, comprised of specially trained, experienced staff and dedicated comprehensive resources. In that role, she oversaw the design and development of the division and worked to enhance the office’s response to vulnerable victims.

Katz also announced the promotion of Assistant District Attorney Shawn Clark to executive assistant district attorney of the Major Crimes Division, Major Crimes Bureau. In addition to CCMCB, Clark will also oversee the homicide, hate crimes and forensic science bureaus. Clark began his career in the Queens DA’s office in 1996 and he has worked in various bureaus since, including criminal court, intake, homicide investigation, homicide trials, narcotics trials and supreme court trial bureau, where he was promoted to deputy chief. Clark later transferred to CCMCB as deputy chief and was promoted to bureau chief.

Katz also announced the promotion of Albert Teichman to director of special projects.

“I will be working closely with them on policies and programs to improve public safety in Queens,” Katz said. “Their vast experience and deep commitment will be valuable resources.”

Smith, Clark and Teichman join the executive staff for the Queens district attorney, which also includes Chief ADA Jennifer Naiburg, Counsel to the DA John Castellano, Counsel to the Chief ADA Vincent Carroll, EADA of Community Partnerships Colleen Babb, EADA of Investigations Gerard Brave, EADA of Appeals & Special Litigations Johnnette Traill, EADA of Criminal Practice and Policy Theresa Shanahan and EADA of the Supreme Court Trial Pishoy Yacoub.

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