US Attorney David DeVillers to step down

US Attorney David DeVillers to step down
U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio David DeVillers tells FOX19 NOW that he has been asked to resign by Feb. 28. DeVillers has been U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio since Nov 1. 2019. (Source: FOX19 NOW)

CINCINNATI (FOX19/AP) - U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio David DeVillers tells FOX19 NOW that he has been asked to resign by Feb. 28.

The Justice Department is asking U.S. attorneys who were appointed by former President Trump to resign from their posts, as the Biden administration moves to transition to its own nominees, according to a senior justice official who spoke to the Associated Press.

DeVillers has been U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio since Nov 1. 2019.

The Southern District includes the metropolitan areas of Cincinnati, Columbus and Dayton and 48 of Ohio’s 88 counties.

DeVillers released the following statement on Tuesday:

“It is with a heavy heart that I announce my resignation.  I have been a prosecutor for my entire career, and it was my wish to remain a prosecutor until the end of my career, but that is not to be. I want to thank my family, friends and colleagues for all of the incredible support and encouragement over the years. I also want to thank Senators Portman and Brown for their trust in me. It has been the honor of my life to serve as the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio. While it was my hope to continue on for a few more months to finish some of the work we have started, I am absolutely certain that the AUSAs and investigators working for the people of the Southern District of Ohio will bring this work to a successful and just closure. I am committed to support and assist whoever the President and Senate choose to permanently replace me to the best that I can. I encourage that person to be just, apolitical, aggressive and impactful.”

DeVillers worked as a federal prosecutor for nearly two decades, primarily prosecuting organized and violent crime.

He has been involved with several government corruption cases in Ohio including filing charges against former House Speaker Larry Householder.

Householder was arrested in July 2020 and pleaded not guilty to a federal corruption charge stemming from an alleged bribery scheme.

DeVillers office also oversaw the indictments of Cincinnati city councilmembers Tamaya Dennard, Jeff Pastor, and P.G. Sittenfeld.

All three were arrested in 2020 for allegedly taking bribes for favorable votes on development deals.

Dennard, 41, pleaded guilty in June 2020 and was sentenced to 18 months in prison on a wire fraud charge. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, she won’t report to prison until March 1, 2021.

Pastor, 35, faces felony charges of bribery, extortion, wire fraud, money laundering and other crimes. He pleaded not guilty and agreed to a voluntary suspension from council pending the outcome of the charges against him.

Sittenfield, 36, is facing a six-count indictment on charges of honest services wire fraud, bribery, and attempted extortion by a government official. He pleaded not guilty and also agreed to a voluntary suspension from council.

See a spelling or grammar error in our story? Click here to report it. Please include title of story.

Copyright 2021 WXIX. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.