STATE OF KANSAS Tenth Judicial District OFFICE OF DISTRICT by maclaren1

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									                                     STATE OF KANSAS
                                     Tenth Judicial District



            OFFICE OF DISTRICT ATTORNEY
                          PHILL KLINE, DISTRICT ATTORNEY


News Release
For Further Information Contact:
Bob Murray
913.715.3015

        District Attorney Phill Kline announced today that changes in the District
Attorney’s office will result in less than a 10% turnover in employees. This turnover
rate is roughly the same as when Kline assumed the office of Attorney General four
years ago.

       In an office of 102 employees, Kline announced that 2 persons announced that
they would leave the office and Kline replaced 8 persons for a total of 10 position
changes representing a 9.8% turnover. Comparatively, new Kansas Attorney General
Paul Morrison announced that of the 117 employees in the Office of Attorney General
that 15 announced that they were leaving and Mr. Morrison terminated 21 for a total of
36 representing a 30.7% turnover rate.

       Kline also announced office organizational structure and new leadership
positions within the office.

       Eric Rucker will serve as Kline’s Chief Deputy District Attorney. Mr. Rucker
most recently served as Kline’s Chief of Staff at the Office of Attorney General and
also served two years as the Deputy Attorney General in charge of Kline’s criminal
division. In that capacity, Mr. Rucker helped lead the doubling of the criminal case load
and the prosecution of 63 murderers in the Attorney General’s office during Kline’s
tenure. Mr. Rucker previously served as Dickinson County Attorney and has over 14
years of prosecutorial experience.

       The 2006 Kansas County and District Attorney’s Association Prosecutor of the
Year recipient will join Kline staff as the new Senior Deputy District Attorney. Mr.
Stephen Maxwell previously served under three Kansas Attorneys General, including
Kline, and has prosecuted 42 murder cases in his 18 years as an attorney. During his
swearing in on Monday Kline commented that between he, Mr. Rucker and Mr. Maxwell
they had prosecuted 8 murders and argued before the United States Supreme Court
twice over the past year compared to two jury trials among the top three prosecutors
formerly in the office of District Attorney.

        Also joining the office in a senior position is Shelly Diehl. Ms. Diehl will serve as
the Section Chief of the Juvenile Division replacing John Fritz who Mr. Kline did not
retain.
       Ms. Diehl most recently served as a Special Assistant Attorney General in the
Office of Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger with the responsibilities of
prosecuting insurance fraud. Kline and Praeger collaborated to create the Insurance
Fraud Division soon after Kline began serving as Attorney General in 2003. Prior to this
time, Ms. Diehl was a Deputy District Attorney and Assistant District Attorney in Douglas
County for 13 years with experience in all types of criminal cases, including murder
prosecutions.

       Mr. Brad Burke will join the office as Section Chief in Charge of Major Crimes.
Mr. Burke served 5 years as an Assistant District Attorney in Douglas County and most
recently served as an Assistant Attorney General where he led efforts in enforcement of
Kansas alcoholic beverage laws and enforcement of the state’s anti-trust laws.

       “I am pleased with the honor of working with these experienced, professional
and dedicated prosecutors and know that they will, through their efforts, enhance the
safety of our community,” Kline said.

        In another change the new District Attorney promoted Assistant District Attorney
Lannie Ornburn to the Section Chief in Charge of Interns. In that capacity, Mr. Ornburn
will oversee the work responsibilities and training of the office’s interns, which typically
number 8-10 persons. “This training ground is vital to enhancing the pool of qualified
and professional prosecutors and those contemplating a career in prosecution will have
a great start under his direct tutelage,” Kline said. Mr. Ornburn replaces Steve Howe,
who Kline declined to retain, in this position.

        Mr. Tom Williams is joining Kline’s office as Chief Investigator of the office,
transferring from the Office of Attorney General where he served in that capacity for the
last 4 years. During that tenure Mr. Williams helped lead the investigation and raid in
Operation Little Apple with elements of the Kansas Bureau of Investigation. Operation
Little Apple was initiated by Kline and through Kline’s relationship with the Department
of Justice is being prosecuted federally. The prosecution, which is still ongoing, is
largely credited as contributing to the break-up of the national “CC Mob” national drug
ring. Prior to teaming up with Kline, Mr. Williams served as an Agent with the FBI for
over 20 years, including a stint as Supervisory Special Agent responsible for White
Collar and Public Corruption Investigations in the Kansas City Field Office of the
Bureau.

       Kline extended an invitation for all of the following Section Chiefs to continue in
the current capacity and all accepted:

    1. Mr. Chris McMullin will continue as Section Chief of the Sex Crimes Unit;
    2. Ms. Jacqie Spradling will continue as Section Chief of the Domestic Violence
       Unit;
    3. Mr. Brent Venneman will continue as Section Chief of the Drug Crimes Unit; and
    4. Ms. Vanessa Riebli will continue as Section Chief of the White Collar and
       Economic Crimes Unit; and
    5. Mr. Patrick Carney will continue as Section Chief of the Traffic Unit.
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                             JOHNSON COUNTY COURTHOUSE, P.O. BOX 728, OLATHE, KANSAS 66051
PHONE NUMBERS: General Office; (913) 715-3001; Executive Administrative Assistant Bob Murray (913) 715.3015; FAX NUMBER: (913) 715-3050

								
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