Posts Tagged ‘Southern District of Illinois’
Monday, August 30th, 2010

The former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois returned to private practice, The Southern reported Monday.

A. Courtney Cox (Sandberg Phoenix & von Gontard P.C)

A. Courtney Cox, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney Friday, joined Sandberg Phoenix & von Gontard P.C., where he will handle business and employment law as a shareholder in its Carbondale, Ill., office. He previously worked as a private practice attorney in Benton, Ill., before becoming a court-appointed U.S. Attorney in November 2007. Stephen Wigginton was sworn in as a presidentially appointed U.S. Attorney on Friday.

“I practiced law 25 years before I became U.S. Attorney and I always enjoyed representing clients,” Cox told the newspaper. “I’m looking forward to getting back to it.”

Cox said he learned a lot as U.S. Attorney, especially the drug and child exploitation problems facing his district. He said child exploitation is “an epidemic.”

“When I became U.S. Attorney, I was naive about child exploitation,” Cox told The Southern. “I very quickly learned of the magnitude of the problem of child pornography and exploitation. It has changed the way I look at the Internet and how I view people in general.”

The former U.S. Attorney said he was initially skeptical about becoming U.S. Attorney because of the more than 90-minute commute from his home in Benton to the U.S. Attorney’s office in Fairview Heights, Ill. But Cox said he knew the job was important.

“I talked to my wife, who said, ‘Your brother, Jon, is going to Afghanistan to serve the country. I think you can drive to Fairview Heights,’” he told the newspaper. “So I accepted.”

Tags: ,
Posted in News | Comments Off
Thursday, August 5th, 2010

The Senate confirmed six U.S. Attorneys by voice vote Thursday night.

They are:

Stephen Wigginton (Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC)

- Stephen R. Wigginton (Southern District of Illinois): President Barack Obama tapped the partner and co-owner of the Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC law firm in Belleville, Ill., on April 14 to replace George W. Bush holdover A. Courtney Cox, who headed the Fairview Heights, Ill.-based office since November 2007. Read more about Wigginton here.

- Edward L. Stanton III (Western District of Tennessee): The president nominated the Federal Express senior counsel on April 14 to succeed David Kustoff, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Read more about Stanton here.

Tim Purdon (Vogel Law Firm)

- Tim Purdon (North Dakota): The partner at the Vogel Law Firm in Bismarck, N.D., would succeed Drew Wrigley, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in Sept. 2009. Obama nominated him on Feb. 4. The president has been criticized for tapping Purdon, who was on the executive committee of the North Dakota Democratic-NPL Party and has no prosecutorial experience. Read more about Purdon here.

John Walsh (Hill & Robbins)

- John F. Walsh (Colorado): The partner at Hill & Robbins PC will succeed Troy Eid, who resigned as U.S. Attorney last year. President Barack Obama nominated Walsh on April 14. Read more about him here.

Stephanie Villafuerte, the deputy chief of staff to Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter (D) for community outreach, was Obama’s first nominee for the Colorado post. But she withdrew her nomination after Republicans alleged she asked employees of the Denver district attorney’s office to access a restricted government database in connection with the 2006 gubernatorial campaign.

- John Vaudreuil (Western District of Wisconsin): Assistant U.S. Attorney in the office since 1980 will succeed Erik C. Peterson, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in June 2009. Obama tapped Vaudreuil on May 27. Read more about him here.

- William Ihlenfeld II (Northern District of West Virginia): The partner at Ihlenfeld Law Office, PLLC, in Wheeling, W.Va., will replace acting U.S. Attorney Betsy Jividen. She has led the office since former U.S. Attorney Sharon L. Potter stepped down in September 2009. The president nominated Ihlenfeld on May 27. Read more about Ihlenfeld here.

UPDATE:

The Senate also confirmed three other U.S. Attorneys by voice vote Thursday night.

They are:

- Melinda Haag (Northern District of California): The partner at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe will replace George W. Bush U.S. Attorney Joseph Russoniello. President Barack Obama nominated her on March 25. Read more about her here.

Barry R. Grissom (Law Office of Barry R. Grissom)

- Barry R. Grissom (Kansas): The Overland Park, Kan., lawyer will succeed Eric Melgren, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Obama tapped him on April 28. Read more about him here.

David Hickton (Burns, White and Hickton)

– David J. Hickton (Western District of Pennsylvania): The founding member of Burns, White & Hickton LLC will succeed Mary Beth Buchanan, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in November 2009 to run for the House. But she didn’t win the Republican nomination in the race for the Western Pennsylvania seat held by Democratic Rep. Jason Altmire. Obama nominated Hickton on May 20. Read more about him here.

The Senate has now confirmed 66 U.S. Attorneys.  The body has yet to consider another 8 would-be U.S. Attorneys nominated by Obama. There are 93 U.S. Attorney posts.

Thursday, June 24th, 2010

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved by voice vote two more of President Barack Obama’s U.S. Attorney nominees at its meeting Thursday.

They are:

Stephen Wigginton (Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC)

- Stephen R. Wigginton (Southern District of Illinois): Obama tapped the partner and co-owner of the Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC law firm in Belleville, Ill., on April 14 to replace George W. Bush holdover A. Courtney Cox, who has headed the Fairview Heights, Ill.-based office since November 2007. Read more about Wigginton here.

- Edward L. Stanton III (Western District of Tennessee): The president nominated the Federal Express senior counsel on April 14 to succeed David Kustoff, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Read more about Stanton here.

Tim Purdon (Vogel Law Firm)

The panel delayed consideration of North Dakota U.S. Attorney nominee Tim Purdon until its next meeting. Committee Republicans can request to hold over a nominee one time.

President Barack Obama nominated the partner at the Vogel Law Firm in Bismarck, N.D., on Feb. 4 to succeed Drew Wrigley, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in Sept. 2009. Obama has been criticized for tapping Purdon, who was on the executive committee of the North Dakota Democratic-NPL Party and has no prosecutorial experience. Read more about Purdon here.

The panel has now approved 59 of Obama’s U.S. Attorney nominees, 57 of whom have won Senate confirmation. The committee has yet to schedule votes for another 12 would-be U.S. Attorneys. There are 93 U.S. Attorney posts.

Monday, June 21st, 2010

The Senate Judiciary Committee is slated to vote on another one of President Barack Obama’s nominees at its meeting Thursday.

Stephen Wigginton (Weilmuenster & Wigginton)

The panel is scheduled to consider Southern District of Illinois U.S. Attorney nominee Stephen R. Wigginton to replace George W. Bush holdover A. Courtney Cox, who has headed the Fairview Heights, Ill.-based office since November 2007.

Wigginton is currently a partner and co-owner of Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC. Read more about him here.

The committee is also slated to vote on Western District of Tennessee U.S. Attorney nominee Edward L. Stanton III at its meeting Thursday.

The committee has yet to schedule votes for another 13 would-be U.S. Attorneys. The panel has approved 57 of Obama’s U.S. Attorney nominees, 51 of whom have won Senate confirmation. There are 93 U.S. Attorney posts.

Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

Stephen Wigginton (Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC)

Stephen R. Wigginton (Southern Illinois University, St. Louis University School of Law) is nominated to be U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois. He would replace Bush holdover A. Courtney Cox, who has headed the office since November 2007.

His vitals:

  • Born in East St. Louis, Ill., in 1963.
  • Has been a partner and co-owner of Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC in Belleville, Ill., since November 2000.
  • Has worked part-time as an assistant state’s attorney in the felony division of the Madison County State’s Attorney’s Office in Edwardsville, Ill., since February 1999.
  • Was an associate at Becker, Paulson, Hoerner & Thompson PC in Belleville from June 1996 to November 2000.
  • Worked as an associate at Kassly Bone Becker Dix Reagan & Young in Belleville from April 1994 to June 1996.
  • Was an associate at Jenkins Kling & Sauerwein, PC in Clayton, Mo., from February 1992 to April 1994.
  • Worked as an assistant circuit attorney-felony prosecutor in the Circuit Attorney’s Office for the City of St. Louis from June 1990 to February 1992.
  • Was an associate in the May Department Stores Company’s Office of Legal Counsel in St. Louis from May 1988 to June 1990. Clerked in the office from May 1987 to September 1987.
  • Clerked for Kassly Bone Becker Dix Reagan & Tillery in Belleville from September 1987 to May 1988 and from May 1986 to May 1987.
  • Has tried approximately 80 to 100 trials to verdict. Served as chief counselor or sole counsel in the criminal trials, chief counselor or co-counsel in most of the civil jury trials and chief counselor pr sole counsel in all but a few of the bench trials.

Click here for his full Senate Judiciary Committee questionnaire.

UPDATE: On his Office of Government Ethics questionnaire Wigginton reported earning a salary and distribution from Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC. His salary for 2009-2010 was $362,048 while he received a distribution of $125,000 for 2009. In 2008, his salary from the firm was $245,134. He also reported earning a salary of $17,822 from the Madison County State’s Attorney’s Office.

On his Senate Judiciary financial disclosure Wigginton reported assets valued at $3.9 million, mostly from his part ownership of Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC and real estate, and $428,700 in liabilities, for a net worth of $3.5 million.

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

The White House announced seven new U.S. Attorney nominations Wednesday night.

They are:

Don Cazayoux (Gov)

- Don Cazayoux (Middle District of Louisiana): The former U.S. House member would replace Bush holdover David R. Dugas, who has served as U.S. Attorney since 2001. Read more about him here.

Pamela C. Marsh (Akerman Senterfitt)

- Pamela C. Marsh (Northern District of Florida): An of counsel for Akerman Senterfit and former Assistant U.S. Attorney, Marsh would succeed George Miller, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Read more about her here.

Zane D. Memeger (Morgan Lewis)

- Zane D. Memeger (Eastern District of Pennsylvania): The partner at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP and former Assistant U.S. Attorney would succeed Pat Meehan, who resigned as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Read more about Memeger here.

- Peter J. Smith (Middle District of Pennsylvania): The former deputy state treasurer for the Pennsylvania Treasury Department and former Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania would succeed Martin C. Carlson, who resigned as U.S. Attorney last year. Read more about Smith here.

- Edward L. Stanton III (Western District of Tennessee): The senior counsel for Federal Express would succeed David Kustoff, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Read more about Stanton here.

John Walsh (Hill & Robbins)

- John F. Walsh (Colorado): The partner at Hill & Robbins PC would succeed Troy Eid, who resigned as U.S. Attorney last year. Read more about Walsh here.

Stephanie Villafuerte, the deputy chief of staff to Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter (D) for community outreach, was Obama’s first nominee for the Colorado post, but she withdrew her nomination after coming under fire for reportedly asking employees of the Denver district attorney’s office to access a restricted government database in connection with the 2006 gubernatorial campaign.

Stephen Wigginton (Weilmuenster & Wigginton)

- Stephen R. Wigginton (Southern District of Illinois): The Assistant State’s Attorney in Madison County, Ill., and partner at Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC would replace Bush holdover U.S. Attorney A. Courtney Cox. Read more about Wigginton here.

Obama has now made 67 U.S. Attorney nominations, 36 of whom have already won Senate confirmation.

On Wednesday, Attorney General Eric Holder called on panel members to move “more expeditiously” on U.S. Attorney nominees. He said the number of would-be U.S. Attorneys stalled in the Senate is “unusual.”

Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama, the committee’s ranking Republican, responded Wednesday that the panel shouldn’t be faulted for failing to get more U.S. Attorneys through the Senate. He said there is a “lack of nominations” coming out of the White House.

Monday, November 9th, 2009

An Illinois man will serve up to seven years in prison for snatching a wallet from the office of a U.S. Attorney finalist, The Belleville News-Democrat reported.

Stephen Wigginton (Weilmuenster & Wigginton)

Stephen Wigginton (Weilmuenster & Wigginton)

Illinois Southern District U.S. Attorney candidate Stephen Wigginton, a partner at Belleville, Ill., law firm Weilmuenster & Wigginton, chased down Freddie L. Davis and tackled him to the ground shortly after the man ran off with a staffer’s wallet in July. Davis was convicted of burglary Thursday and will be sentenced Dec. 18.

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) recommended this summer that President Barack Obama either keep Southern District U.S. Attorney A. Courtney Cox on the job or replace him with Wigginton.

Wigginton has been with Weilmuenster & Wigginton since 2000. Prior to joining the Belleville firm, he spent eight years as a litigator at law firms. He also served as a criminal prosecutor in the Circuit Attorney’s Office in St. Louis.