Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Staff Members Leave AG

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Staff Members Leave AG

Article excerpt

After just eight months on the job, West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey's consumer director has resigned and gone back to her former law firm. Michelle Gaston, who had headed the Consumer Protection Division since late January, returned last week to Steptoe & Johnson's law office in Charleston.

In her resignation letter, Gaston said she missed litigating cases, "as opposed to performing administrative duties at the attorney general's office. Gaston, who made $105,000 a year, also commented she would have more time to spend with her family while working at her old law firm.

Other recent departures from Morrisey's office include investigators Gordon Ingold and Joe Crawford.

Ingold, who was Morrisey's chief investigator for the consumer office and public integrity unit, resigned Aug. 11 to take a job as a security officer for the Columbia Pipeline Group. Ingold left for a higher-paying job, according to his resignation letter.

Ingold started at the attorney general's office in September 2014. The job paid $45,559 a year.

Crawford, who also worked as an investigator for Morrisey's office, resigned August 21. He recently was hired as chief of police at Yeager Airport in Charleston. Crawford, a former police chief in Eleanor and St. Albans, said he was leaving Morrisey's office to resume his law enforcement career.

Crawford, who made $45,000 as an investigator with the attorney general's public integrity unit, started working for Morrisey in August 2014. Crawford will make $65,000 a year at the airport.

Also, the attorney general's press secretary, Jared Hunt, resigned from his post last week, just three months after taking a job as Morrisey's spokesman. Hunt, former Charleston Daily Mail business editor, starts Sunday as communications director for the House of Delegates. Hunt made $55,000 a year as Morrisey's spokesman. His salary at the state Legislature will be $58,000.

Morrisey's office has yet to replace Hunt and the other three employees.

"Whenever you have an office known for the quality of its work, your employees will be highly sought after by other organizations, said Anthony Martin, chief operating officer at the attorney general's office, in a prepared statement. …

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