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Commission charged with selecting nominee for new state prosecutor

State Prosecutor Emmet Davitt provided caseload statistics and made recommendations to strengthen his office, which handles cases of alleged political corruption.

Emmet Davitt retired July 31 as the state prosecutor after more than eight years in the position. (The Daily Record/File photo)

A commission to nominate a new state prosecutor is set to convene following the retirement last week of Emmet Davitt, who had been in the role for more than eight years.

The State Prosecutor Selection and Disabilities Commission is charged with reviewing applications and interviewing applicants for the position.

Davitt, who announced his retirement in January, retired July 31. The state prosecutor investigates election law violations, state ethics law violations and misconduct in office by public officials and employees.

Carroll County State’s Attorney Brian DeLeonardo will chair the commission, his office announced Wednesday. The commission also consists of state Attorney General Brian E. Frosh, former Dels. Brian K. McHale and Doyle Niemann, former state Sens. Joan Carter Conway and Roger Manno and attorney M. Christina Hamilton.

Frosh said Wednesday that no meetings have been scheduled yet and that the commission chair will put out a notice seeking applications for the position.

The commission has 70 days from Gov. Larry Hogan’s notification of a vacancy to file a report on applicants it finds legally and professionally qualified, according to the news release from DeLeonardo. The governor may appoint a nominee or reject the list within 30 days of receiving the report.

“The Office of State Prosecutor is charged with rooting out corruption across the state, and as such, their work is essential to maintaining the integrity of government,” DeLeonardo said in a statement. “I eagerly look forward to working with Attorney General Frosh, along with all of the other commission members, to find a person that brings the experience, demeanor, and tenacity required for this job.”

This year, Davitt’s office convicted a staffer for Del. Richard K. Impallaria, R-Baltimore and Harford, of distributing an illegal robocall. The office also convicted a student activist of illegal wiretapping and a former Eastern Shore police chief of misconduct in office. The state prosecutor’s office was also asked to launch an investigation into former Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh by Hogan earlier this year.

(Editor’s note: A previous version of this story stated that the Office of the State Prosecutor confirmed it was investigating Pugh. The office does not confirm active investigations.)


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