Monday, March 4, 2024

After 19 years, New Hanover, Pender DA to leave office in September

District Attorney Ben David will not run for reelection next year after serving New Hanover and Pender counties for 19 years. (Port City Daily/file)

SOUTHEASTERN N.C. — Nearly two decades ago the district attorney for New Hanover and Pender counties was elected to the position and has held the role, running unopposed five times, ever since.

District Attorney Ben David announced Monday he will be stepping down from his position Sept. 3, 2024 — 60 days before Election Day. According to a press release, his goal is to provide residents of the Sixth Prosecutorial District the opportunity to elect someone new.

“It is my hope that by giving this much notice, there will be adequate time for candidates to make their case for why they should lead,” David said in the release.

Port City Daily asked the DA if he planned to run for a different office, to which he responded “no.” He added in the press release the timing to step away was right according to his family needs.

“The support of my family has allowed me to enjoy success in this role and to serve you for all these years,” David said.

Having moved to Wilmington in April 1999 — the day after the Columbine shooting — David started his career as a prosecutor and was elected as district attorney five years later.

“Giving victims a voice, speaking for the dead in murder trials, and being the conscience for the community any time a crime occurs has been the great honor of my professional life,” David said in the release.

During his career, David has worked with more than 50 prosecutors and victim-witness, legal assistants serving the community, more than 1,200 law enforcement professionals among 20 partner agencies and hundreds of members of the judicial system.

“By any objective measure, the DA’s office has a strong team that vigorously pursues justice every day and fights for victims of crime in and out of the courtroom,” David said in the release. “I am confident that this strength will give the office ballast during next year’s transition.”

Over the next nine months, David will continue to handle cases, serve on statewide commissions, and complete local projects underway.

“More than anything, I want to thank the over 300,000 New Hanover and Pender County residents who call these counties their home and have entrusted me with this position,” David added.

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