WASHINGTON D.C.-On Thursday, Jan. 4, U.S. Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Jon Kyl (R-AZ) recommended to President Bush that he nominate Diane J. Humetewa (Hopi) to fill the vacancy of retiring U.S. Attorney Paul Charlton. Charlton tendered his resignation as U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona effective Jan. 31.
If her nomination becomes official, Humetewa, 42, would be the first Native American U.S. Attorney in Arizona. Additionally, she may also be the nation's first Native American U.S. Attorney.
Humetewa graduated from Arizona State University's College of Law in 1993. She began her career with the U.S. Attorney's Office as a victim advocate for then-U.S. Attorney Stephen M. McNamee in 1987, and has served no less than six U.S. Attorneys. She has also served on the Hopi Court of Appeals.
Senator McCain stated, "As a native Arizonan, [Humetewa] has a sound appreciation for the culture and legal issues unique to the region. [She has] worked on the Senate Indian Affairs Committee during both of my tenures as Chairman, and I am confident her remarkable work ethic and commitment to justice will make her an effective U.S. Attorney."
Senator Kyl added, "Her distinguished career in public service, her experience as a prosecutor, and work on behalf of crime victims make her an ideal nominee for this role."
Outgoing U.S. Attorney Charlton also stated, "[Humetewa has] proven herself to be a great prosecutor and an individual with a very balanced sense of judgment. [She] has developed outstanding relationships with the Native American community and as an early advocate of victim's rights she has ensured that victims of crime are well represented in the federal system."
The U.S. Attorney is the chief federal law enforåcement officer in the District of Arizona and is appointed by the President. U.S. Attorneys prosecute violations of federal law and represent federal agencies in federal courts as well as state courts, when appropriate. Unlike regular attorneys, U.S. Attorneys are not permitted to represent private individuals or businesses, and are not permitted to give legal advice to members of the public. The U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona has offices in Phoenix, Tucson, Yuma and Flagstaff.
The U.S. Attorney's office in Flagstaff serves northern Arizona. It handles intake and initial charging decisions on cases arising on Indian lands, federal lands, or otherwise federally covered offenses in northern Arizona. The office is also a resource to northern Arizona law enforcement agencies and provides training and assistance to those agencies when requested, providing assistance and information to victims of federal crimes.