St. Lawrence chief assistant DA resigns post

St. Lawrence County Court Judge Jerome J. Richards swears in assistant district attorneys, including ADA Sara E. Charpentier, second from right, in 2018. Ms. Charpentier was named chief ADA by District Attorney Gary M. Pasqua this week. Christopher Lenney/Watertown Daily Times

CANTON — St. Lawrence County’s chief assistant district attorney has resigned, effective Monday.

Jason M. Marx submitted his letter of resignation, dated Dec. 29, to District Attorney Gary M. Pasqua, writing he hopes to maintain “a close bond and relationship.”

Mr. Marx was named chief ADA by Mr. Pasqua in 2017, after previously working as a conflict defender for Franklin County and an ADA in St. Lawrence County under former District Attorney Nicole M. Duvé. He left that St. Lawrence County position in 2012, and took an ADA position in Clinton County, where he served until Mr. Pasqua was elected.

In his resignation letter, Mr. Marx wrote he “had other plans” when he was tapped by Mr. Pasqua in 2017.

“However, when the opportunity to assist you, a man I know to be of honor, in restoring integrity to this office, I could not refuse,” he wrote. “As expected, we landed in tall weeds. Those days are far behind, your administration has more than found its legs, and you have little more than (a) year to prepare for the upcoming election. I will never regret and only be proud of these three years of unmitigated accomplishment; it has been extraordinary.”

When Mr. Pasqua was elected, he replaced former District Attorney Mary E. Rain, who decided she would not seek a second four-year term.

In 2018, Ms. Rain’s license to practice law was suspended for two years based on complaints of misconduct reviewed by the state Third Judicial Department. The court ruled Ms. Rain violated 24 distinct rules related to professional misconduct charges filed in March and July 2017. Some of those violations stemmed from Ms. Rain’s conduct during the investigation into the 2011 murder of 12-year-old Garrett Phillips.

In a 2017 interview with the Times, Mr. Marx said he and Mr. Pasqua had discussed the “culture, the work ethic and the disposition” of the district attorney’s office and wanted to set a principled example, particularly for the office’s younger attorneys.

“This is the most important job I have been ever asked to do,” Mr. Marx said in 2017.

Mr. Pasqua said Thursday he has not yet named a new chief ADA. His office is currently comprised of eight ADAs: Joshua A. HaberkornHalm, Sara E. Charpentier, Matthew L. Peabody, Sasha Mascarenhas, Jamie L. Biondolillo, Alexander Nichols, Dominik E. Maida and Dillon Bullard.

Mr. Marx could not be reached for further comment at the time of this report.

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