John C. Milhiser
John C. Milhiser assumed leadership of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of Illinois on Oct. 31, 2018. Prior to his confirmation by the U.S. Senate on January 3, 2019, U.S. Attorney Milhiser was appointed to the position by the federal judiciary in the Central District.
As U.S. Attorney, Mr. Milhiser serves as the chief law enforcement officer on behalf of the citizens in the district’s 46 counties to prosecute federal criminal cases and to serve as legal counsel for the U.S. government. In addition to the district’s Springfield, Ill., headquarters office, in the state’s capital, the district operates staffed offices in Peoria, Rock Island, and Urbana.
Prior to his appointment as U.S. Attorney, Mr. Milhiser served eight years as the elected State’s Attorney in Sangamon County, Springfield, Illinois. As State’s Attorney, Mr. Milhiser prosecuted serious violent offenses, including first degree murder, armed violence, sexual assault and the attempted murder of police officers.
During his tenure as State’s Attorney, Mr. Milhiser partnered with the court and service providers to establish specialized court programs for non-violent, first-time drug offenders, defendants with mental health needs, and for veterans with specialized needs. A strong advocate for victims, Mr. Milhiser established a program in the State’s Attorney’s Office that hosts a courthouse facility dog to assist victims and witnesses as they participate in the prosecution of violent crimes, including murder, sexual assault and child sexual abuse.
Mr. Milhiser began his legal career in 1997 as an Assistant State’s Attorney in Sangamon County where he prosecuted cases in the juvenile, civil, and felony divisions before entering private practice in 2003. Mr. Milhiser returned to the State’s Attorney’s Office in 2008 as the First Assistant State’s Attorney, prior to his appointment as State’s Attorney in 2010. He was subsequently twice-elected to the State’s Attorney position, first in 2012, and again in 2016.
Mr. Milhiser previously served as President of the Illinois State’s Attorneys Association. He received his undergraduate degree from James Madison University and his J.D. from the University of Illinois College of Law.