Commentary and information about public safety and security, intelligence and counterintelligence, open government and secrecy, and other issues in northern Idaho and eastern Washington.

Location: Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, United States

Raised in Palouse, WA. Graduated from Washington State University. US Army (Counterintelligence). US Secret Service (Technical Security Division) in Fantasyland-on-the-Potomac and Los Angeles. Now living in north Idaho.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

US Attorney Recusal - Chapter 2

A Spokane, Washington, newspaper is reporting that Jim McDevitt, the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Washington, will ask the US Department of Justice to appoint an outside US Attorney to investigate charges of public corruption in Spokane's River Park Square scandal.

This is the second highly publicized case in Spokane in which McDevitt has asked to step aside in favor of an outside US Attorney.

While the appointment of an outside US Attorney may seem truly extraordinary, it is not. Neither does is imply wrongdoing on McDevitt's part. The US Department of Justice recognizes that US Attorneys are very likely to have social and political interactions which could make it difficult for them to objectively investigate and prosecute figures in their communities.

For a detailed explanation of what can lead to an outside US Attorney being appointed, see the Whitecaps post titled McDevitt's Recusal dated May 20, 2005. The two hyperlinks in that post have been updated, however newspaper subscription may be required to open the link to the newspaper story.