After more than a decade away, local attorney Bryan Shorstein is back at the 7th Judicial Circuit State Attorney’s Office.
Shorstein, who is the son of prominent former Jacksonville top prosecutor Harry Shorstein, was hired Friday to serve as State Attorney R.J. Larizza’s executive director and public information officer, Larizza’s office confirmed Tuesday.
Bryan Shorstein worked for the 7th Circuit office in the 1990s and early 2000s, serving for a time as an assistant state attorney with Larizza under then-State Attorney John Tanner.
He resigned in 2003, he told The Record on Tuesday, to pursue a career in private practice.
But his name showed up in the news in 2006 during a public feud between his father and Tanner.
At the time, the elder Shorstein was working on an investigation of the Flagler County jail initiated by Tanner but later assigned by then-Gov. Jeb Bush to Harry Shorstein, who was the 4th Judicial Circuit State Attorney.
The reassignment came amid allegations that Tanner had started the investigation in retaliation for his daughter’s arrest in Flagler Beach after which she was placed in a restraint chair in the jail.
Tanner, though, alleged that his counterpart to the north also had a conflict and was acting on an old grudge against him because of dealings with the younger Shorstein while he worked in 7th Circuit office.
Tanner, in 2006, disclosed information that state and federal authorities had looked into allegations of drug use and case fixing by the younger Shorstein in the 1990s and that he was forced to resign in 2003 because he downloaded pornography on a work computer.
No charges were ever brought against Bryan Shorstein as a result of the probe in the 1990s, and, in 2006, he told the Orlando Sentinel that his resignation years later had nothing to do with pornography.
“I had a friend who emailed explicit photos to about 50 or 100 of his friends, but it was never downloaded,” he told the paper. “It is true I received it, but I never went to any site to solicit it.
“To say it had to do with my resignation is ridiculous,” he added.
He told The Record much the same thing on Tuesday and said that the fight between his father and Tanner, whom he said he remains friends with, was a difficult time.
“It was tough because I’m close with my dad,” he said.
A news release from Larizza’s office announcing Bryan Shorstein’s hiring also noted that Assistant State Attorney Jason Reid is taking over as the office’s director of operations-south.
Assistant State Attorney, and former public information officer, Spencer Hathaway, is returning to the office as managing attorney for the Daytona Beach misdemeanor division after a brief time in private practice in New Smyrna Beach, the release said.