LEWISTON — Criminal prosecution leadership in Androscoggin, Franklin and Oxford counties was cast into doubt with the recent resignation of the deputy district attorney.

Andrew Matulis was tapped by District Attorney Andrew Robinson to assume the mantle of top prosecutor for the tri-county offices when Robinson was nominated last month by Gov. Janet Mills for a judgeship on the Maine District Court.

Robinson was confirmed to the bench by the Maine Senate on April 5 and sworn into office on April 6.

According to state law, his deputy district attorney would have undertaken Robinson’s duties at that time.

But Matulis said Wednesday he has given notice that he will leave his office by the end of April.

“I have submitted my resignation effective April 29, 2022,” Matulis wrote in an email to the Sun Journal. “It has been an honor serving the people of this community for the last 12-plus years, and I want to offer a special thanks to everyone at the DA’s Office for their hard work in ensuring the fair administration of criminal justice.”


That will leave two vacancies at the top of the District Attorney’s Office for Maine’s District 3.

On Wednesday, Matulis wrote: “I fully endorse ADA Neil McLean Jr. to become the next District Attorney.”

McLean has filed papers to appear on the June primary ballot.

If he were to win the primary, McLean would appear on November’s ballot as the Republican nominee. No Democrat has filed papers for that office.

According to state law, Mills is responsible for appointing an acting district attorney who lives in one of the three counties.

McLean lives in Turner.


But the statute also requires that, “In the case of a vacancy in the term of a district attorney who was nominated by primary election before the general election, the district attorney appointed by the governor must be enrolled in the same political party as the district attorney whose term is vacant. In making the appointment, the governor shall choose from any recommendations submitted by the county committee or committees of the political party from which the appointment is to be made.”

McLean is registered as a Republican and Robinson is a Democrat.

Lindsay Crete, Mills’ press secretary, said Wednesday in an email that the governor’s office is working with the county committee to “identify qualified candidates to fill the position.”

State law doesn’t require that the appointed district attorney already be serving in the capacity as prosecutor prior to the appointment.

The statute states only that the candidate must be a “competent” attorney.

Androscoggin County Democratic Committee Chairwoman Elaine Makas said Wednesday she is working with her counterparts in Franklin and Oxford counties to make a recommendation to the governor. She said their letter to Mills might contain one name or it could be more than one.

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