COLUMBUS – Today, leaders in Ohio’s law enforcement and legal community lined up to condemn Mike DeWine’s attacks on David Pepper’s record. Specifically, DeWine attacked Pepper’s accomplished legal career and record as a Hamilton County Commissioner. Yesterday, WBNS 10TV rated these claims about Pepper’s leadership of Hamilton County as “grossly misleading.”
Jay McDonald, President of the Fraternal Order of Police of Ohio, made the following statement praising Pepper’s public safety record and his leadership in a fight to protect Hamilton County sheriff’s deputies from lay-offs:
“David Pepper is a tough, effective leader who isn’t afraid to fight for police officers, sheriff’s deputies, and safer Ohio communities. During tough times, it was David Pepper who fought to limit layoffs and get sheriff’s deputies back to work. Pepper has the support of the Fraternal Order of Police, including those members at the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office, because of the leadership he has shown time and time again throughout his career in public service.”
Overall, Pepper helped lead the turnaround of Cincinnati by putting more police officers on the street while improving police-community relations. As Chair of the Public Safety Committee and President of the Hamilton County Commission, he also passed laws and initiatives that locked up violent offenders.
Judge Nathaniel Jones of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit (retired) praised Pepper’s diverse and accomplished legal career:
“Considering David’s rich experience as a lawyer and his record of public service, it is my firm conclusion that Pepper is an extraordinarily gifted and experienced lawyer who would serve Ohio’s interests well as Attorney General. Indeed, based on his broader and far more recent litigation experience, he would serve those interests in a manner incapable of being replicated by the incumbent.”
Since taking the Ohio bar exam in 1999, Pepper has practiced at two national law firms with a focus on civil/commercial litigation, making numerous appearances in state and federal trial and appellate courts. Recently (during the current campaign), Pepper single-handedly won an election law case in US District Court in Cincinnati, successfully overturning an unconstitutional election statute.
From 1996 to 2007, Mike DeWine failed to keep his law license active and was not legally allowed to practice law in Ohio. DeWine only reentered the practice shortly before running for attorney general, and he has presented to no evidence that he has tried any cases or made any court appearances in decades.