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State Attorney VS District Attorney - what's the difference?

 
 
Reply Fri 12 Dec, 2003 07:12 pm
I live in Florida, and if anyone doesn't know by now, i'm a Trial Clerk. We have State Attorneys here, not District attorneys. It's my full assumption that the entire state of florida is that way, since I worked for the Clerk's office when I lived in Tampa (hillsborough county) and in neither counties, hills. nor orange, have I heard mention of a District Attorney.

Mr. Onyx is a new yorker born & raised and he tells me of District Attorneys and STATE attorneys both are there.

Can someone tell me what the difference is?

When you commit a crime in Florida, that crime is committed against all Floridians, and therefore, ALWAYS the 'state of florida' vs 'defendant' and it's always Assitant State Attorneys who prosecute on behalf of the elected State Attorney...each circuit or county has it's own state attorney's office, but they're all THE STATE OF FLORIDA.....

so....where, in other states, does the 'district attorney' come into play???
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Type: Discussion • Score: 5 • Views: 4,323 • Replies: 7
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onyxelle
 
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Reply Fri 12 Dec, 2003 07:57 pm
i reaaally want an answer...
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fishin
 
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Reply Fri 12 Dec, 2003 08:42 pm
I think it's just a matter of how the state carves up things.

In FL you have "State's Attorneys" setup by "Circuits" (you also have a few "County Attorneys"). In VA they have "Commonwealth's Attorneys". In OH they are "County Prosecuting Attorneys". NY calls them "County District Attorneys". Here in MA they are just "District Attorneys" (MA has this love/hate relationship thing going with the whole idea of county level government.)

BTW, you can find a list for each state's setup at http://www.prosecutor.info
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Dec, 2003 10:54 pm
I am used to California, and it never occurred to me that other states didn't have District Attorneys...
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onyxelle
 
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Reply Sat 13 Dec, 2003 05:34 am
many thanks.
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conjos
 
  1  
Reply Fri 1 May, 2015 08:39 am
I'm from New York and we always use the term Distract Attorney. I've never heard the term States Attorney used here. I've heard it used on the news about other states, but never here in NY. I live in upstate NY near Albany NY. The state Capitol.
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MMYoung
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 May, 2015 12:01 am
A state attorney acts as a state legal representative while a district attorney is a prosecuting officer of a judicial district, he represent state in a distict level.
layman
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 May, 2015 10:50 am
@MMYoung,
Quote:
A state attorney acts as a state legal representative while a district attorney is a prosecuting officer of a judicial district, he represent state in a distict level.


I'm not sure this is accurate. As I understand it, it's merely a matter of terminology, which varies from state to state. In effect, every "district attorney" represents the State he resides in, enforcing the laws of that State.

The term "State's Attorney" is therefore probably more accurate, but even in those states which use it, each county (district) has it's own "States Attorney," which prosecutes crimes, etc., that are allegedly committed in that county.
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