US Attorney Robert J. Higdon, Jr. announces his resignation

U.S. Attorney Robert Higdon Jr. announcing the results of "Operation Dodgeball" in Wilmington...
U.S. Attorney Robert Higdon Jr. announcing the results of "Operation Dodgeball" in Wilmington on Jan. 17, 2020.(WECT)
Updated: Feb. 11, 2021 at 4:00 PM EST
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RALEIGH, N.C. (WECT) - Robert J. Higdon Jr., the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, announced Thursday that he has submitted his letter of resignation to President Biden, effective Feb. 28.

The resignation was in response to Biden’s request that all Presidentially-appointed U.S. attorneys step down.

Last week, the Justice Department confirmed it would ask U.S. attorneys who were appointed by Trump to resign from their posts, as the Biden administration moved to transition to its own nominees.

Higdon served as one of the state’s top federal prosecutors for three and a half years after being nominated to be the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina by President Donald Trump on August 2, 2017 and being confirmed by the U.S. Senate in September 2017.

In a news release, Higdon expressed it was an honor to serve.

“He expressed his honor to serve as United States Attorney and his gratitude to former President Trump and Senators Burr and Tillis for their support and for giving him an opportunity to serve the people of this District.”

It’s fairly customary for the U.S. attorneys to leave their positions after a new president is in office, but the departures are not automatic and don’t necessarily happen all at once. In 2017, then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions asked for the resignations of 46 U.S. attorneys who were holdovers from the Obama administration.

The U.S. attorneys serve at the pleasure of the president and are generally nominated with a recommendation from a home-state senator. The 93 U.S. attorneys are responsible for overseeing offices of federal prosecutors and charged with prosecuting federal crimes in their jurisdictions.

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