Nathan Smith, a Benton County deputy prosecuting attorney, declared Tuesday (Feb. 25) he is seeking the top prosecutor’s post in this year’s election to replace his boss, Van Stone, who has decided not to run for re-election to a third term.
Smith, 31, announced his candidacy on the Benton County Courthouse steps at noon. In a prepared statement, he said, “I am passionate about the mission of our office – to seek justice in everything we do and to prosecute every case with integrity. I am excited for the chance to serve the community where my wife and I grew up and where we are proud to call home.”
Stone did not say in a news release on Monday (Feb. 24) what he plans to do professionally after 16 years in the office as a deputy prosecutor and prosecuting attorney. Click here to read the news release from Van Stone announcing he is not seeking re-election.
Smith noted in a news release that Stone supports his candidacy for the top prosecutor’s post.
“Nathan has had the experience in the courtroom that you need to be successful as prosecuting attorney,” Stone said. “I think his experience in successfully trying dozens of cases and handling high-profile prosecutions will be invaluable.”
Smith also is backed by state Sen. Bart Hester, R-Cave Springs, and Lt. Joe Falcon of the Bentonville Police Department, according to the release.
“Nathan Smith is a hardworking family man who will always do the right thing,” Hester said. “It’s who he is, it’s how he lives his life and its how he will run the prosecutor’s office.”
Falcon said, “Nathan Smith has uncompromising integrity and a relentless spirit in the pursuit of justice that I have observed first hand. Deputy Prosecutor Smith has the passion to prosecute righteously and defend the victims of crime in Benton County.”
Smith, a University of Arkansas School of Law graduate, started in the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office in 2002 as an intern and has served as a prosecutor since 2007, according to his LinkedIn profile and the news release.
Smith and his wife, Bentonville native Elizabeth Reeves Smith, have two children. The family attends First Baptist Church of Bentonville, where Smith’s father, Philip Smith, is the senior pastor.
No other candidate has been named as a potential contender in the nonpartisan May election.