Frayla Tarpinian is the Head of the Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence and Elder Abuse Unit for the Kennebec County District Attorney’s Office. She is an aggressive advocate on behalf of victims of violence, exploitation, and abuse. Frayla is an experienced litigator, since joining the office in 2013, she has worked on all types of cases from minor civil infractions up to attempted murder and manslaughter cases. She has also worked with the juvenile justice system, the Domestic Violence Court and as a team member of the Veterans Court and the Co-Occurring Disorders Court. She recognizes a need for important criminal justice reforms that connect citizens to treatment for substance use disorder and mental health issues instead of warehousing people in jails. At the same time, she is capable of working within the system to hold people accountable for their actions and protect the public from truly dangerous, high-risk individuals.
Prior to joining the Kennebec County District Attorney’s Officer, Frayla ran her own practice in Windham and was part of a small firm in Brunswick. She worked in indigent legal defense for over five years. In that capacity she represented a variety of individuals and worked hard to make sure the system treated people fairly.
While in law school she worked as a research assistant for the Schuster Institute of Investigative Journalism which formed the first journalism based Innocence Project in the country. The two cases she began working on both led to the exoneration of individuals who were wrongfully convicted. During law school she also participated in the Northeastern Domestic Violence Institute leading a team of volunteers doing crisis intervention in a hospital. After law school, Frayla earned a clerkship with the Superior Court of Maine.
Frayla lives in Windham with her wife, Becca, and two daughters. She is active in her community serving on the Windham Comprehensive Plan Review Team and the Board of Appeals. She has also volunteered as a Big Sister, with Home to Home, and served on the Board of Riding to the Top. She has guest lectured at the University of Maine School of Law and University of Maine, Augusta and presented on Electronic Monitoring in Cases of Domestic Violence, Child Pornography Sentencing , and Domestic Violence Prosecution.
Frayla has participated in the system from all sides: she has personally worked with victims of violent crime, and with people accused of criminal conduct. She is aware of the strengths of our system and the places where improvements are needed. She would like to see the criminal justice system become more equitable, reserving incarceration for perpetrators of violent criminal conduct and an increase in diversion and treatment for lower level offenders. Frayla will fight for justice for all citizens of Maine.