United States District Court for the District of Columbia
The United States District Court for the District of Columbia (in case citations, D.D.C.) is a federal district court in the District of Columbia. It also occasionally handles (jointly with the United States District Court for the District of Hawaii and the High Court of American Samoa) federal issues that arise in the territory of American Samoa, which has no local federal court or territorial court. Appeals from the District are taken to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (except for patent claims, and claims against the U.S. government under the Tucker Act, which are appealed to the Federal Circuit).
|United States District Court for the District of Columbia|
|Location||E. Barrett Prettyman U.S. Courthouse|
|Appeals to||District of Columbia Circuit|
|Established||March 3, 1863|
|Chief Judge||Beryl A. Howell|
|Officers of the court|
|U.S. Attorney||Channing D. Phillips (acting)|
The court was established by Congress in 1863 as the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia, replacing the abolished circuit and district courts of the District of Columbia that had been in place since 1801. The court consisted of four justices, including a chief justice, and was granted the same powers and jurisdiction as the earlier circuit court. Any of the justices could convene a United States circuit court or a local criminal court. In 1936, Congress renamed the court the District Court of the United States for the District of Columbia. Its current name was adopted in 1948, and from then on justices were known as judges.
Originally housed in the former District of Columbia City Hall, the court now sits in the E. Barrett Prettyman Federal Courthouse located at 333 Constitution Avenue, Northwest, Washington, D.C. The District has no local district attorney or equivalent, and so local prosecutorial matters also fall into the jurisdiction of the United States Attorney for the District of Columbia. Assistant United States Attorneys (AUSAs) are tasked with prosecution of not only federal crimes but also crimes that would normally be left to the state prosecutor's discretion. Because of this the District has the largest U.S. Attorney's Office in the nation, with around 250 AUSAs.
As of June 17, 2021[update]:
|#||Title||Judge||Duty station||Born||Term of service||Appointed by|
|96||Chief Judge||Beryl A. Howell||Washington, D.C.||1956||2010–present||2016–present||—||Obama|
|88||District Judge||Colleen Kollar-Kotelly||Washington, D.C.||1943||1997–present||—||—||Clinton|
|98||District Judge||James E. Boasberg||Washington, D.C.||1963||2011–present||—||—||Obama|
|99||District Judge||Amy Berman Jackson||Washington, D.C.||1954||2011–present||—||—||Obama|
|100||District Judge||Rudolph Contreras||Washington, D.C.||1962||2012–present||—||—||Obama|
|102||District Judge||Christopher R. Cooper||Washington, D.C.||1966||2014–present||—||—||Obama|
|103||District Judge||Tanya S. Chutkan||Washington, D.C.||1962||2014–present||—||—||Obama|
|104||District Judge||Randolph Moss||Washington, D.C.||1961||2014–present||—||—||Obama|
|105||District Judge||Amit Mehta||Washington, D.C.||1971||2014–present||—||—||Obama|
|106||District Judge||Timothy J. Kelly||Washington, D.C.||1969||2017–present||—||—||Trump|
|107||District Judge||Trevor N. McFadden||Washington, D.C.||1978||2017–present||—||—||Trump|
|108||District Judge||Dabney L. Friedrich||Washington, D.C.||1967||2017–present||—||—||Trump|
|109||District Judge||Carl J. Nichols||Washington, D.C.||1970||2019–present||—||—||Trump|
|74||Senior Judge||Joyce Hens Green||inactive||1928||1979–1995||—||1995–present||Carter|
|77||Senior Judge||Thomas F. Hogan||Washington, D.C.||1938||1982–2008||2001–2008||2008–present||Reagan|
|81||Senior Judge||Royce Lamberth||Washington, D.C.
San Antonio, Texas[Note 1]
|83||Senior Judge||Paul L. Friedman||Washington, D.C.||1944||1994–2009||—||2009–present||Clinton|
|84||Senior Judge||Gladys Kessler||inactive||1938||1994–2007||—||2007–present||Clinton|
|85||Senior Judge||Emmet G. Sullivan||Washington, D.C.||1947||1994–2021||—||2021–present||Clinton|
|89||Senior Judge||Henry H. Kennedy Jr.||inactive||1948||1997–2011||—||2011–present||Clinton|
|90||Senior Judge||Richard W. Roberts||inactive||1953||1998–2016||2013–2016||2016–present||Clinton|
|91||Senior Judge||Ellen Segal Huvelle||inactive||1948||1999–2014||—||2014–present||Clinton|
|92||Senior Judge||Reggie Walton||Washington, D.C.||1949||2001–2015||—||2015–present||G.W. Bush|
|93||Senior Judge||John D. Bates||Washington, D.C.||1946||2001–2014||—||2014–present||G.W. Bush|
|94||Senior Judge||Richard J. Leon||Washington, D.C.||1949||2002–2016||—||2016–present||G.W. Bush|
|95||Senior Judge||Rosemary M. Collyer||inactive||1945||2002–2016||—||2016–present||G.W. Bush|
- Judge Lamberth has sat with the Western District of Texas for several months each year since 2015.
Vacancies and pending nominationsEdit
|Seat||Seat last held by||Vacancy reason||Date of vacancy||Nominee||Date of nomination|
|5||Emmet G. Sullivan||Senior status||April 3, 2021||Jia M. Cobb||June 15, 2021|
|16||Ketanji Brown Jackson||Elevation||June 17, 2021||Florence Y. Pan|
|#||Judge||State||Born–died||Active service||Chief Judge||Senior status||Appointed by||Reason for|
|1||David Kellogg Cartter||DC||1812–1887||1863–1887||1863–1887||—||Lincoln||death|
|2||George P. Fisher||DC||1817–1899||1863–1870||—||—||Lincoln||resignation|
|3||Abram B. Olin||DC||1808–1879||1863–1879||—||—||Lincoln||retirement|
|4||Andrew Wylie||DC||1814–1905||1863[Note 1]
|5||David Campbell Humphreys||DC||1817–1879||1870–1879||—||—||Grant||death|
|6||Arthur MacArthur Sr.||DC||1815–1896||1870–1887||—||—||Grant||retirement|
|7||Alexander Burton Hagner||DC||1826–1915||1879–1903||—||—||Hayes||retirement|
|8||Walter Smith Cox||DC||1826–1902||1879–1899||—||—||Hayes||retirement|
|9||Charles Pinckney James||DC||1818–1899||1879–1892[Note 3]||—||—||Hayes||retirement|
|10||William Matthews Merrick||DC||1818–1889||1885–1889[Note 4]||—||—||Cleveland||death|
|11||Martin V. Montgomery||DC||1840–1898||1887–1892[Note 5]||—||—||Cleveland||resignation|
|12||Edward Franklin Bingham||DC||1828–1907||1887–1903[Note 6]||1887–1903||—||Cleveland||retirement|
|13||Andrew Coyle Bradley||DC||1844–1902||1889–1902||—||—||B. Harrison||death|
|14||Louis E. McComas||DC||1846–1907||1892–1899[Note 7]||—||—||B. Harrison||resignation|
|15||Charles Cleaves Cole||DC||1841–1905||1893–1901||—||—||B. Harrison||resignation|
|16||Harry M. Clabaugh||DC||1856–1914||1899–1903||—||—||McKinley||appointment as Chief Justice|
|16.1||Harry M. Clabaugh||DC||1856–1914||1903–1914[Note 8]||1903–1914||—||T. Roosevelt||death|
|17||Job Barnard||DC||1844–1923||1899–1914[Note 9]||—||—||McKinley||retirement|
|18||Thomas H. Anderson||DC||1848–1916||1901–1916[Note 10]||—||—|| McKinley[Note 11]
T. Roosevelt[Note 12]
|19||Ashley Mulgrave Gould||DC||1859–1921||1902–1921||—||—||T. Roosevelt||death|
|20||Jeter Connelly Pritchard||DC||1857–1921||1903–1904||—||—||T. Roosevelt||elevation to 4th Cir.|
|21||Daniel Thew Wright||DC||1864–1943||1903–1914||—||—||T. Roosevelt||resignation|
|22||Wendell Phillips Stafford||DC||1861–1953||1904–1931[Note 13]||—||—||T. Roosevelt||retirement|
|23||J. Harry Covington||DC||1870–1942||1914–1918||1914–1918||—||Wilson||resignation|
|24||Walter I. McCoy||DC||1859–1933||1914–1918||—||—||Wilson||appointment as Chief Justice|
|24.1||Walter I. McCoy||DC||1859–1933||1918–1929||1918–1929||—||Wilson||retirement|
|25||Frederick Lincoln Siddons||DC||1864–1931||1915–1931||—||—||Wilson||death|
|26||William Hitz||DC||1872–1935||1916–1931[Note 14]||—||—||Wilson||elevation to D.C. Cir.|
|27||Thomas Jennings Bailey||DC||1867–1963||1918–1950||—||1950–1963||Wilson||death|
|28||Adolph A. Hoehling Jr.||DC||1868–1941||1921–1927||—||—||Harding||resignation|
|30||Alfred Adams Wheat||DC||1867–1943||1929–1930||—||—||Hoover||appointment as Chief Justice|
|30.1||Alfred Adams Wheat||DC||1867–1943||1930–1941||1930–1941||1941–1943||Hoover||death|
|31||Jesse Corcoran Adkins||DC||1879–1955||1930–1946||—||1946–1955||Hoover||death|
|32||Oscar Raymond Luhring||DC||1879–1944||1930–1944||—||—||Hoover||death|
|33||Joseph Winston Cox||DC||1875–1939||1930–1939||—||—||Hoover||death|
|34||James McPherson Proctor||DC||1882–1953||1931–1948||—||—||Hoover||elevation to D.C. Cir.|
|35||F. Dickinson Letts||DC||1875–1965||1931–1961[Note 15]||1958–1959||1961–1965||Hoover||death|
|36||Daniel William O'Donoghue||DC||1876–1948||1931–1946[Note 16]||—||1946–1948||Hoover||death|
|37||Bolitha James Laws||DC||1891–1958||1938–1945||—||—||F. Roosevelt||appointment as Chief Justice|
|37.1||Bolitha James Laws||DC||1891–1958||1945–1948||1945–1948||—||F. Roosevelt||appointment as District Judge|
|37.2||Bolitha James Laws||DC||1891–1958||1948–1958||1948–1958||—||operation of law||death|
|38||Thomas Alan Goldsborough||DC||1877–1951||1939–1951||—||—||F. Roosevelt||death|
|39||James Ward Morris||DC||1890–1960||1939–1960||—||—||F. Roosevelt||death|
|40||David Andrew Pine||DC||1891–1970||1940–1965||1959–1961||1965–1970||F. Roosevelt||death|
|41||Matthew Francis McGuire||DC||1898–1986||1941–1966||1961–1966||1966–1986||F. Roosevelt||death|
|42||Edward C. Eicher||DC||1878–1944||1942–1944||1942–1944||—||F. Roosevelt||death|
|43||Henry Albert Schweinhaut||DC||1902–1970||1944–1956||—||1956–1970||F. Roosevelt||death|
|45||Richmond Bowling Keech||DC||1896–1986||1946–1966[Note 17]||1966–1966||1966–1986||Truman||death|
|46||Edward Matthew Curran||DC||1903–1988||1946–1971[Note 18]||1966–1971||1971–1988||Truman||death|
|47||Edward Allen Tamm||DC||1906–1985||1948–1965[Note 19]||—||—||Truman||elevation to D.C. Cir.|
|48||James Robert Kirkland||DC||1903–1958||1949–1958[Note 20]||—||—||Truman||death|
|49||Burnita Shelton Matthews||DC||1894–1988||1949–1968[Note 21]||—||1968–1988||Truman||death|
|50||Charles F. McLaughlin||DC||1887–1976||1949–1964[Note 22]||—||1964–1976||Truman||death|
|51||Walter Maximillian Bastian||DC||1891–1975||1950–1954[Note 23]||—||—||Truman||elevation to D.C. Cir.|
|53||Joseph Charles McGarraghy||DC||1897–1975||1954–1967||—||1967–1975||Eisenhower||death|
|55||George Luzerne Hart Jr.||DC||1905–1984||1958–1979[Note 24]||1974–1975||1979–1984||Eisenhower||death|
|56||Leonard Patrick Walsh||DC||1904–1980||1959–1971||—||1971–1980||Eisenhower||death|
|57||William Blakely Jones||DC||1907–1979||1962–1977||1975–1977||1977–1979||Kennedy||death|
|58||Spottswood William Robinson III||DC||1916–1998||1964–1966[Note 25]||—||—||L. Johnson||elevation to D.C. Cir.|
|59||Howard Francis Corcoran||DC||1906–1989||1965–1977||—||1977–1989||L. Johnson||death|
|60||William B. Bryant||DC||1911–2005||1965–1982||1977–1981||1982–2005||L. Johnson||death|
|61||Oliver Gasch||DC||1906–1999||1965–1981||—||1981–1999||L. Johnson||death|
|62||John Lewis Smith Jr.||DC||1912–1992||1966–1983||1981–1982||1983–1992||L. Johnson||death|
|63||Aubrey Eugene Robinson Jr.||DC||1922–2000||1966–1992||1982–1992||1992–2000||L. Johnson||death|
|64||Joseph Cornelius Waddy||DC||1911–1978||1967–1978||—||—||L. Johnson||death|
|65||Gerhard Gesell||DC||1910–1993||1967–1993||—||1993–1993||L. Johnson||death|
|66||June Lazenby Green||DC||1914–2001||1968–1984||—||1984–2001||L. Johnson||death|
|67||John H. Pratt||DC||1910–1995||1968–1989||—||1989–1995||L. Johnson||death|
|68||Barrington D. Parker||DC||1915–1993||1969–1985||—||1985–1993||Nixon||death|
|69||Charles Robert Richey||DC||1923–1997||1971–1997||—||1997–1997||Nixon||death|
|70||Thomas Aquinas Flannery||DC||1918–2007||1971–1985||—||1985–2007||Nixon||death|
|71||Louis F. Oberdorfer||DC||1919–2013||1977–1992||—||1992–2013||Carter||death|
|72||Harold H. Greene||DC||1923–2000||1978–1995||—||1995–2000||Carter||death|
|73||John Garrett Penn||DC||1932–2007||1979–1998||1992–1997||1998–2007||Carter||death|
|75||Norma Holloway Johnson||DC||1932–2011||1980–2001||1997–2001||2001–2003||Carter||retirement|
|76||Thomas Penfield Jackson||DC||1937–2013||1982–2002||—||2002–2004||Reagan||retirement|
|78||Stanley S. Harris||MD||1927–present||1983–1996||—||1996–2001||Reagan||retirement|
|79||George Hughes Revercomb||VA||1929–1993||1985–1993||—||—||Reagan||death|
|82||Michael Boudin||DC||1939–present||1990–1992||—||—||G. H. W. Bush||resignation|
|86||Ricardo M. Urbina||DC||1946–present||1994–2011||—||2011–2012||Clinton||retirement|
|97||Robert L. Wilkins||DC||1963–present||2010–2014||Obama||elevation to D.C. Cir.|
|101||Ketanji Brown Jackson||DC||1970–present||2013–2021||—||—||Obama||elevation to D.C. Cir.|
- Confirmed by the United States Senate on March 12, 1863; confirmation was reconsidered on March 13, 1983 with no subsequent vote; his nomination expired March 14, 1863.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated January 5, 1864, confirmed by the Senate on January 20, 1864 and received commission the same day.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated on December 1, 1879, confirmed by the Senate December 10, 1879, and received commission the same day.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated on December 14, 1885, confirmed by the Senate March 15, 1856, and received commission the same day.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated on December 20, 1887, confirmed by the Senate January 26, 1888, and received commission the same day.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated on December 20, 1887, confirmed by the Senate January 23, 1888, and received commission the same day.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated on December 6, 1892, confirmed by the Senate January 25, 1893, and received commission the same day.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated on November 10, 1903, confirmed by the Senate November 16, 1903, and received commission the same day.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated December 11, 1899, confirmed by the Senate December 19, 1899, and received commission the same day.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated December 5, 1901, confirmed by the Senate February 4, 1902, and received commission February 6, 1902.
- Judge Anderson was given a recess appointment by President McKinley.
- Judge Anderson was nominated by President McKinley but was appointed to the Court by (i.e., received his commission from) President Roosevelt.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated December 6, 1904, confirmed by the Senate December 13, 1904, and received commission the same day.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated December 15, 1916, confirmed by the Senate January 2, 1917, and received commission the same day.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated December 15, 1931, confirmed by the Senate February 17, 1932, and received commission February 20, 1932.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated December 15, 1931, confirmed by the Senate January 26, 1932, and received commission February 23, 1932.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated January 8, 1947, confirmed by the Senate January 22, 1947, and received commission January 24, 1947.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated January 8, 1947, confirmed by the Senate February 3, 1947, and received commission February 5, 1947.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated January 13, 1949, confirmed by the Senate March 29, 1949 and received commission April 1, 1949.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated January 5, 1950, confirmed by the Senate March 8, 1950, and received commission March 9, 1950.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated January 5, 1950, confirmed by the Senate April 4, 1950, and received commission April 7, 1950.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated January 5, 1950, confirmed by the Senate February 27, 1950, and received commission March 1, 1950.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated November 27, 1950, confirmed by the Senate December 14, 1950, and received commission December 22, 1950.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated January 17, 1959, confirmed by the Senate September 9, 1959, and received commission September 10, 1959.
- Recess appointment; formally nominated February 3, 1964, confirmed by the Senate July 1, 1964, and received commission July 2, 1964.
Chief judges have administrative responsibilities with respect to their district court. Unlike the Supreme Court, where one justice is specifically nominated to be chief, the office of chief judge rotates among the district court judges. To be chief, a judge must have been in active service on the court for at least one year, be under the age of 65, and have not previously served as chief judge. A vacancy is filled by the judge highest in seniority among the group of qualified judges. The chief judge serves for a term of seven years or until age 70, whichever occurs first. The age restrictions are waived if no members of the court would otherwise be qualified for the position.
When the office was created in 1948, the chief judge was the longest-serving judge who had not elected to retire on what has since 1958 been known as senior status or declined to serve as chief judge. After August 6, 1959, judges could not become or remain chief after turning 70 years old. The current rules have been in operation since October 1, 1982.
Succession of seatsEdit
- Associate Justices Clabaugh, McCoy, Wheat and Laws were elevated to Chief Justice.
- Chief Justice Laws was assigned to the new Seat 13 by operation of law upon the abolition of the Chief Justice Seat 1.
- https://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-08-1124T GAO (U.S. Government Accountability Office. AMERICAN SAMOA: Issues Associated with Some Federal Court Options. September 18, 2008. Retrieved September 7, 2019.
- Singman, Brooke (March 2, 2021). "Channing Phillips to be DC acting US attorney, but Michael Sherwin will supervise Capitol riot probe". Fox News. Retrieved March 5, 2021.
- "U.S. District Courts for the District of Columbia and the District of Potomac: Legislative History - Federal Judicial Center". www.fjc.gov.