Jim Hingeley, retired public defender and incumbent Robert Tracci's challenger, was handed a staggering $50,000 campaign check by local activist Sonjia Smith. Nearly $10,000 of Mr. Hingeley's war chest came from Andrew Sneathern, who also received a large donation from Sonjia Smith last year when he considered running for Albemarle County commonwealth's attorney.
Ms. Smith gave $100,000 to Del. David Toscano's Democrat primary opponent before Mr. Toscano dropped out of the race.
Money has always been a part of American politics, but not always in commonwealth's attorney's races.
The public deserves to know what conversations, if any, occurred between Sonjia Smith and Jim Hingeley and, more importantly, what pledges Mr. Hingeley might have made to Ms. Smith, if any, to justify these unprecedented, obscene campaign donations to an office that should be free of politics.
Evonne M. Burns