By: States Attorney.
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Darcie N. McElwee
The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Maine announced that Darcie N. McElwee has taken the oath of office and is officially the presidentially-appointed Chief Federal Law Enforcement Official for the District of Main. President Joseph R. Biden nominated Darcie McElwee for the highest position in the Office on August 10, 2021, following the resignation of former U.S. Attorney Halsey B. Frank. Attorney Donald E. Clark served as the Acting U.S. Attorney for the District of Maine, prior to the appointment of Top Federal Prosecutor Johnson. On October 5, 2021, the U.S. Senate confirmed McElwee as the new U.S. Attorney for the District of Maine. Chief U.S. District Judge Jon D. Levy had sworn in Darcie N. McElwee as the new Top Federal Prosecutor for the District of Maine on October 8, 2021, as President Biden simultaneously signed her commission.
Table of Contents
- Educational Background and Bar & Court Admissions
- Bar Admissions
- Court Admissions
- Legal Internships and Employment
- Legal Career – Government Practice
- Legal Career – U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maine
- Legal Career – Directorships
- Legal & Judicial Organization Memberships and Teaching Background
- Academic and Professional Honors and Awards
- Published Writings and Public Statements
- Most Significant Litigation Matters Handled by U.S. Attorney McElwee
- 10 most significant litigated matters handled by Attorney Darcie McElwee
- Statement by U.S. Attorney McElwee
- Office Jurisdiction
- Contact Details
- Portland Office
- Bangor Office
- Social Media Profiles of Darcie McElwee
Educational Background and Bar & Court Admissions
A native of Caribou, from the far northern part of Aroostook County, U.S. Attorney Darcie McElwee attended the Bowdoin College and received a degree in Bachelor of Arts in English and Government & Legal Studies in 1995. Three years following her undergraduate studies, U.S. Attorney McElwee earned her Juris Doctorate from the University of Maine School of Law in 1998. In the same year, Top Federal Prosecutor McElwee was granted admission into the Maine State Bar Association. In November 2000, U.S. Attorney Darcie McElwee was admitted to practice in the United States District Court for the District of Maine. In April 2011, U.S. Attorney McElwee was admitted to practice in the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.
- Maine, October 1998
- Massachusetts, January 1999 – Inactive membership (Attorney McElwee has never actually practiced law in MA)
- United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit (April 2011)
- United States District Court for the District of Maine (November 2000)
- All state courts in Maine (October 1998)
Legal Internships and Employment
Within her years in law school, U.S. Attorney McElwee served in various positions in the legal field. In 1995, she briefly worked as a Legal Secretary at the Law Office of John D. McElwee, Esq. In 1996, U.S. Attorney McElwee became an intern at the Smith Elliott Smith & Garmey. From 1997 to 1998, she worked as an intern at the Cumberland District Attorney’s Office.
Legal Career – Government Practice
United States Attorney McElwee began her legal career as an Assistant District Attorney for the counties of Penobscot and Piscataquis. For approximately four years, from 1998 to 2002, U.S. Attorney McElwee worked as a law enforcement official in charge of representing the state government on behalf of the district attorney in the process of investigating and prosecuting individuals who have allegedly committed a crime.
Legal Career – U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maine
In 2002, U.S. Attorney Darcie McElwee became a part of the Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Maine. She was primarily appointed as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Office’s Criminal Division, responsible for the prosecution of violent crimes, including arson offenses, child sexual exploitation, firearms, interstate domestic violence, and sex trafficking cases. In 2005, Top Federal Prosecutor McElwee served as the district’s Project Safe Neighborhoods Coordinator – a position she held for the subsequent 16 years. Throughout her almost two decades of service in the Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Maine, Top Federal Prosecutor Darcie McElwee has shown her dedication and commitment to keeping the district safe while achieving justice for victims of violent crime. Moreover, she has demonstrated an excellent level of competency and professionalism in her work, which is evident in her extensive track record as a career prosecutor.
Legal Career – Directorships
Apart from her duties in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maine, Chief Federal Law Enforcement Official Darcie McElwee took time to serve as a member of the Board of Directors in the Maine Women’s Fund from September 2000 to 2007 and later became the President from September 2007 to 2008. In addition, she has been the Treasurer of the Board of Directors in the Seacoast Area Mothers of Multiples since 2012 and a member of the Board of Directors in the Fiddlehead Center for the Arts since March 2021.
Legal & Judicial Organization Memberships and Teaching Background
Among the bar associations, legal committees, and judicial organizations that U.S. Attorney McElwee is a member of include the Maine Trial Lawyers Association. She has committed to imparting her knowledge and skills in prosecution as an Adjunct Faculty in the Maine Trial Lawyers College of Advocacy in 2011 and 2019. McElwee has also formerly served as an Adjunct Faculty of the University of Maine School of Law from September 2005 to May 2008. U.S. Attorney McElwee is also a member of the Cumberland Bar Association, where she served as a General Committee Member from June 2004 to 2011, until she was appointed as the Board President in June 2011, remaining in the position until June of 2012. Moreover, U.S. Attorney Darcie McElwee has been a Fellow of the Maine State Committee of the American College of Trial Lawyers since November 2020. She was also a member of the Piscataquis County, Penobscot County Bar Associations, and Edward Thaxter Gignoux Inn Court.
- American College of Trial Lawyers
Maine State Committee (November 2020 – Present)
- Maine Trial Lawyers Association
College of Trial Advocacy Faculty (2019 & 2011)
- Cumberland Bar Association
Board President (June 2011 – June 2012)
General Committee Member (June 2004 − June 2011)
- Piscataquis County Bar Association
- Penobscot County Bar Association
- Edward Thaxter Gignoux Inn of Court
Academic and Professional Honors and Awards
- Fellowship, American College of Trial Lawyers, 2020
- Scholarship, American College of Trial Lawyers, 1998
- Best Advocate Award, Northeast Regional Trial Competition, 1998
- Best Brief Award, Trilateral Moot Court Competition, 1998
United States Attorney Darcie N. McElwee has received several honors and awards throughout her academic and professional career, including the Best Brief Award from the Trilateral Moot Court Competition in 1998 and the Best Advocated Award from the Northeast Regional Trial Competition, also in 1998. She earned a Scholarship and a Fellowship from the American College of Trial Lawyers in 1998 and 2020.
Published Writings and Public Statements
U.S. Attorney Darcie McElwee has published writings, including Federal Gun Laws and Your Client, published in the 2011 Maine Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers Newsletter. She has also written the Juvenile Prosecution, Prevention, Intervention, and Education: A Collection of Project Sentry Programs, published in the United States Attorneys’ Bulletin in March 2010. United States Attorney McElwee also co-authored the Federally Prosecuting Juvenile Gang Members – an article published in the Department of Justice Journal of Federal Law and Practice in November 2020. Apart from her published writings, U.S. Attorney Darcie McElwee has given a large number of public statements, including commencement speeches, lectures, and political speeches, such as providing a lecture entitled Federal Firearms Consequences of State Court Matters in 2019.
Most Significant Litigation Matters Handled by U.S. Attorney McElwee
With almost 20 years of service in the Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Maine, Top Federal Prosecutor Darcie McElwee has handled an array of investigations and prosecutions. Among the most significant litigation matters that she has personally handled include a 2014 attempted murder, wherein the defendant has been sentenced to life in prison. U.S. Attorney McElwee also served as lead counsel in the 2012 arson of the USS Miami – a nuclear submarine undergoing a dry dock overhaul. The list also includes a 2016 child exploitation case, a 2018 sex & drug trafficking case, and a 2003 interstate arson, all of which she served as co-counsel for.
10 most significant litigated matters handled by Attorney Darcie McElwee
- United States v. Gregory Owens (2014 – 2015)
- United States v. Casey Fury (2012 – 2013)
- United States v. Timothy Ortiz (2018-2019)
- United States v. William Gaudet (2016-2018)
- United States v. Vincent Graham (2018-2019)
- United States v. George Yeaton III (2004-2005)
- United States v. Shawn Sayer (2010-2011)
- United States v. Gary Irving (2013-2014)
- United States v. Otto Appelt (2003-2004)
- United States v. Benjamin Lee (2012-2014)
Further details regarding the above litigations may be found in the public questionnaire accessible here.
Statement by U.S. Attorney McElwee
In a statement released on Oct0ber 8, 2021, U.S. Attorney Darcie McElwee expressed her excitement as she is to lead the Office, in collaboration with federal law enforcement officials and state and local counterparts, in the pursuit of justice. Furthermore, U.S. Attorney McElwee claimed that her focus and priority would be the safety of the individuals within the community – to free the district of fear, violence, and hate in any form. More than that, she stated that she is looking forward to connecting with all of the communities under the jurisdiction of the Office to properly hear and address the needs of the residents while managing the priorities of the Department of Justice and the President.
“I am thrilled and honored to lead a district of federal law enforcement professionals, in partnership with our state and local counterparts, who work hard in the pursuit of justice. It is important to me that every person in Maine feels safe—and lives free from fear, violence, and hate in any form. I look forward to getting out in the communities of every corner of the state to do a great deal of listening and learning while focusing on the priorities of the Department of Justice and the President,” said U.S. Attorney McElwee.
U.S. Attorney Darcie N. McElwee is the chief federal law enforcement official in the District of Maine. As the top federal prosecutor for the district, she is responsible for faithfully upholding the nation’s laws, along with committedly ensuring public safety and order. Currently, U.S. Attorney McElwee is leading and overseeing a staff of approximately 54 employees and contractors, comprising 27 Assistant U.S. Attorneys, 24 support personnel, and three contractors. The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Maine handles all of the prosecutions of federal crimes within the district’s jurisdiction, including crimes related to child exploitation, firearms, narcotics, public corruption, and terrorism. In addition, the U.S. Attorney’s Office shall manage all civil litigations in which the United States is a party and collect debts owed to the United States.
Full Name: Darcie N. McElwee
Public email ID: [email protected]
United States Attorney’s Office
100 Middle Street, East Tower, 6th Floor
Portland, ME 04101
United States Attorney’s Office
202 Harlow Street, Room 111
Bangor, ME 04401
Social Media Profiles of Darcie McElwee
Username: U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maine
Username: U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maine
Username: U.S. Attorney Maine
Updated: February 15, 2022