M. Rhett DeHart
Acting U.S. Attorney
M. Rhett DeHart became the Acting United States Attorney for the District of South Carolina on March 1, 2021, following the resignation of U.S. Attorney Peter M. McCoy, Jr. by virtue of the Vacancies Reform Act.
As Acting U.S. Attorney, DeHart is the chief federal law enforcement officer in South Carolina and is responsible for federal criminal prosecutions as well as civil litigation involving the United States. He supervises an office of approximately 62 Assistant United States Attorneys, 75 support staff, and 18 contract support staff, all of whom are responsible for prosecuting federal crimes affecting the district, including narcotics and firearms cases, gang violence, human trafficking, white-collar crime, securities fraud, public corruption, terrorism, and civil rights violations. The office also defends the United States in civil cases and collects debts owed to the United States. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in South Carolina has offices in Columbia, Charleston, Florence, and Greenville.
Before becoming Acting U.S. Attorney, DeHart served as the District’s First Assistant U.S. Attorney – supervising the Criminal, Civil, Appellate and Administrative Divisions in the District of South Carolina, as well as serving as the primary liaison between the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Chief U.S. District Judge.
A native of North Augusta, S.C., and a resident of Mount Pleasant, S.C. – DeHart has served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the District’s Charleston office since 2001, prosecuting a variety of crimes while focusing on white-collar fraud and child exploitation. The recipient of the United States Attorney’s Award in 2006, 2009, and 2014, and numerous law enforcement awards – DeHart has prosecuted hundreds of felonies, authored thirty appellate briefs, tried approximately twenty jury and non-jury trials, and argued seven cases before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Prior to joining the Department of Justice, DeHart was a Counsel on the United States Senate Judiciary Committee, where he supervised the criminal legislation section. A graduate of the Honors College at the University of South Carolina, DeHart graduated Order of the Coif from the University of South Carolina School of Law.