OKLAHOMA CITY - An Oklahoma County prosecutor has been named to the Court of Criminal Appeals by Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin on Tuesday.

Scott Rowland's appointment is effective immediately, according to a press release issued by the governor's office.

Rowland has spent the past 11 years as first assistant district attorney for Oklahoma County. He has also served as general counsel to the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs control and is a former assistant to the Oklahoma attorney general, for whom he served as a white-collar crime prosecutor from 1994 to 1996.

“Scott Rowland is knowledgeable in criminal law, and has the right temperament and experience to be an appellate judge,” said Fallin. “He has proven in his more than 20 years as a public servant to be fair and respectful.”

As first assistant in Oklahoma’s largest district attorney’s office, Rowland oversees about 55 lawyers and 80 support staff, and assists District Attorney David Prater in managing the office’s $11 million-dollar-per-year budget.  He tries capital murder, racketeering, and conspiracy cases, and he has been cross-deputized as a special assistant U.S. attorney in the western and northern districts of Oklahoma.

“I’m humbled by Governor Fallin’s confidence in me,” Rowland said. “Although much of my career has been spent in trial and other litigation work, I’ve also spent much time studying the growth of the law through appellate court decisions. An appellate judge must protect our physical safety from crime and violence on the one hand and our sacred constitutional rights on the other. The indelible right of all to be safe in their homes and on the streets must be protected without abridging or sacrificing the constitutional rights of the accused. To have either of these without the other fails to serve a basic aim of our democracy.”