Hancock County

Military lawyer is new city prosecutor for Bay St. Louis


The City Council appointed a new city prosecutor on Tuesday.

Raymond Lee “Ed” Edwards will fill the vacancy left by Don Rafferty, the former city prosecutor and former city attorney. The council voted 6-0 to ratify Mayor Les Fillingame’s appointment of Edwards.

The city earlier this year appointed Trent Favre city attorney.

A graduate of Loyola College of Law in New Orleans, Edwards owns a practice in Bay St. Louis and serves as an attorney in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps of the Mississippi National Guard. The JAG Corps is the legal branch of the military and has commissioned officers who are also licensed attorneys.

Edwards carries the rank of major. He was on active duty from 2010 to 2015, deploying to Iraq and Kuwait. He now serves as Camp Shelby’s command judge advocate — the post’s top-ranking lawyer.

He appeared on the city’s radar screen when Bay St. Louis Municipal Court Judge Steven Maggio asked him to fill in as a temporary prosecutor in a hearing for an armed robbery case. The municipal court was without a prosecutor at the time of the hearing, which took place earlier Tuesday.

In the hearing, Edwards presented enough probable cause for the case to move forward to a grand jury. Maggio was impressed with his prosecutorial skills and recommended city leaders consider him for the job, Councilman Lonnie Falgout said.

“He got it bound over to a grand jury to keep an armed robber off the street,” Falgout said.

The mayor said he followed Maggio’s informal endorsement and decided to submit Edwards as his appointment to the council.