Ontario County DA stepping down, but not calling it quits

Ontario County District Attorney Michael Tantillo may be days away from retiring, but he’s not closing his law books.

The longtime prosecutor — 39 years, including 28 as DA — still loves the law, trying cases, and the challenges and rewards of the profession, but just feels it is time to let someone else take over and will be turning over his reins to his first assistant, Jim Ritts, who won the seat in the November election after Tantillo chose not to seek re-election.

“I would like to maintain some involvement in criminal prosecution at some level for some office or offices on a part-time basis,” Tantillo said. “I’ve been talking to a couple of prosecutors around the state about possibilities; whether it be assisting in their offices or doing contract appellate work out of my house or something like that, but I would like to maintain some connection to the field of criminal prosecution in one way or another.”

He is also looking forward to spending more time with his wife Laura and their two grandchildren: Bridget, 4; and Jack, 1.

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