DANNY WICENTOWSKI/FILE PHOTO
Robert Dierker, who led the St. Louis Circuit Attorney's Office's prosecution of Governor Eric Greitens, is heading to the city counselor's office.
A former circuit court judge, Dierker served as chief trial attorney during the prosecution of the sitting governor — a tumultuous period that ended with prosecutors dismissing charges right in the middle of jury selection
. His tenure at the office appears on track to last just eight months.
Dierker was considered controversial even before that wildly controversial case, thanks almost entirely to his 2006 book blasting "liberals" and "femi-fascists."
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aimed to take on taking on "the cloud cuckooland of radical feminism" and liberals "tying the criminal justice system in knots over endless death penalty procedural questions." He even tossed in a defense of Judge Roy Moore (then just a nutter who refused to honor the separation of church and state, not a pedophile).
All of that made him a strange choice for Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner, elected in part for her liberal bonafides (and, famously, financially backed by George Soros). At the time, St. Louis Alderman Scott Ogilvie blasted the hire
, saying that Dierker had made it clear he didn't think sexual harassment was a legal issue — an awkward position for someone who'd have to deal with sex crimes cases, not to mention an office with women in it.
Reached today, Ogilvie suggests the new position might be less worrisome. "The city counselor tends to work on technical, legal stuff," he points out. "It's less likely to involve an individual victim or defendant. It's government entity versus government entity."
In a statement, Gardner said that Dierker will be leaving in September, and that she wished him well: "Robert Dierker has been a tremendous asset to the Circuit Attorney’s Office. While we are sad to see him go, we are thrilled he will continue to serve our community."
The news was first reported by KMOV, which reported that Dierker will be paid $130,000 annually
Gardner said she was replacing Dierker with Travis D. Partney. "Partney joined the Circuit Attorney’s Office in 2017 as Team Leader of the Special Victim’s Unit," she said in a statement. "Prior to his tenure at the office, Travis was a State of Missouri Associate Circuit Judge presiding over civil and criminal matters and Assistant Prosecuting Attorney in Jefferson County, Missouri."
Gardner has faced criticism for the turnover in her office, with the public defender's office claiming that new attorneys haven't been given the training or support they need to follow the law
. District defender Mary Fox called the situation at the office "chaos," a charge Gardner has disputed.
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