By Paige Clark
U.S. Attorney Joe Hogsett announced his resignation from the post Monday after serving four years as prosecutor for the federal court’s Southern District of Indiana.
“It has been an honor to serve in this office for the last four years because I have had the privilege to do so alongside a talented group of assistant United States attorneys” Hogsett said in a statement. “I owe them and our tireless support staff a debt of gratitude for the dedication and resilience that has been displayed every day of my tenure.”
Hogsett declined through a spokesman to comment.
Since he took the post in 2010, Hogsett’s office set new records for the number of defendants charged and total number of convictions in the state while cutting spending every year.
“I appreciate (Hogsett’s) proactive approach to taking guns out of the hands of violent criminals and tackling white-collar crime,” said U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly, D-Ind. “By bringing together federal law enforcement agencies and local prosecutors through his Violent Crime Initiative, Joe has created a good example of how we can leverage federal resources to assist regional and local efforts to reduce violent crime.”
Hogsett’s office also helped the district lead the nation in average length of sentences on criminal defendants.
“As a former law enforcement officer, I commend Joe for putting the bad guys behind bars and making it clear that our public servants serve the public, not themselves,” said U.S. Congressman André Carson, D-Ind. “I look forward to seeing what his future holds.”
The announcement immediately led to speculation that Hogsett will be running for mayor of Indianapolis in 2015. He has previously served as Indiana secretary of state and run for several other offices.
Former Gov. Evan Bayh – who also served two terms in the U.S. Senate – did not confirm or deny that Hogsett would seek the Democratic nomination for mayor. But he said that he “hopes so.” Hogsett served as chief of staff in the Bayh governor’s office.
“I think he would be a great mayor, particularly with his record on fighting crime and violence in our streets which I think is probably the foremost issue facing Indianapolis today,” Bayh said. “He’s my friend, I believe in him, but of course he has to make his decision first.”
State Rep. Ed Delaney, D-Indianapolis, has announced he’s running for mayor. But he also said that Hogsett would be a “good candidate.”
Bayh said he will do “whatever I’m legally allowed to do” to support Hogsett if he does decide for run for mayor.
“I have the greatest respect for Gov. Bayh,” Delaney said, “he is free to take any political position he would like.”
Paige Clark is a reporter for TheStatehouseFile.com, a news service powered by Franklin College journalism students and faculty.