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Meet the U.S. Attorney

Photo of Joe Kelly

Joseph P. Kelly
United States Attorney
District of Nebraska

Joseph P. Kelly was sworn in as the United States Attorney for the District of Nebraska on February 23, 2018.  U.S. Attorney Kelly was nominated by President Donald Trump on December 1, 2017 and confirmed by the U.S. Senate on February 15, 2018.   U.S. Attorney Kelly is the top-ranking federal law enforcement official in the District of Nebraska.

U.S. Attorney Kelly grew up in Lexington,  Nebraska.  Prior to becoming U.S. Attorney for the District of Nebraska, Mr. Kelly was elected Lancaster County Attorney and served in that capacity from 2011 to 2018.  Before his election, Mr. Kelly served in the Lancaster County Attorney’s Office as Chief Deputy County Attorney (2000 to 2011) and as a Deputy County Attorney (1981-1986 and again from 1990-2000).  Mr. Kelly has prosecuted a variety of crimes including homicide, robbery, sexual assault and white collar. Mr. Kelly was an associate with Berniger, Berg and Diver PC in Colorado Springs from 1987 to 1990.   


"The United States Attorney is the representative not of an ordinary party to a controversy, but of a sovereignty whose obligation to govern impartially is as compelling as its obligation to govern at all; and whose interest, therefore, in a criminal prosecution is not that it shall win a case, but that justice be done. As such he is in a peculiar and very definite sense the servant of the law, the twofold aim of which is that guilt shall not escape or innocence suffer. He may prosecute with earnestness and vigor -- indeed he should do so. But, while he may strike hard blows, he is not at liberty to strike foul ones. It is as much his duty to refrain from improper methods calculated to produce a wrongful conviction as it is to use every legitimate means to bring about a just one."

-- Mr. Justice Sutherland in Berger v. United States, 295 U.S. 88 (1935)

Updated July 15, 2019

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