Under the Dome

McCrory names Orr interim DA

Former state Supreme Court Justice Bob Orr has been appointed by Gov. Pat McCrory to serve out of the term of a retiring district attorney representing several mountain counties.

McCrory and Orr ran against each other in the Republican primary for governor in 2007.

Orr, who also served on the state Court of Appeals, will fill the vacancy in the 24th Prosecutorial District that was held by Jerry Wilson. The district covers Avery, Madison, Mitchell, Watauga and Yancey counties.

Orr will be in the office until a new district attorney is elected this year.

Orr will take a leave of absence from the Poyner Spruill private law firm while serving as chief prosecutor. He was executive director and senior counsel for the N.C. Institute for Constitutional Law.

“I would like to thank Justice Orr for his willingness to serve our great state again,” McCrory said in a news release his office released Tuesday. “Justice Orr’s wealth of experience will be a perfect fit to fill the remainder of this term.”

While in private practice, Orr in 2012 represented the N.C. Association of Educators in its successful lawsuit challenging the law that prohibited its members from automatically deducting dues from their paychecks. Orr argued that the General Assembly’s midnight session to override the governor’s veto of the dues checkoff bill violated the state constitution because it was beyond the scope of the special session.