Former Centre County district attorney giving up law career

A former Centre County district attorney is hanging up his law license.

Michael Madeira said Wednesday he will ask to have his license placed on inactive status, which means he will not be able to practice law and does not have to keep up with certain educational requirements. Instead, Madeira is focusing on a second career at Penn State, where he’s doing work unrelated to the legal profession.

The decision comes as he’s facing suspension from the bar because he has not yet fulfilled 10 credits toward the educational requirements.

According to an order from the state Supreme Court, Madeira has until Jan. 6 to take the credits or be suspended. Madeira said he had not yet received word of the court’s order and that his decision had nothing to do with the court order.

Madeira, who was the county’s top prosecutor from 2006 to 2009, said he has not practiced law for years and that’s why it did not make sense for him to stay current with the continuing education requirements.

Madeira won election to succeed longtime District Attorney Ray Gricar, who went missing in April 2005. Madeira served one term, which was marked at times by missteps that resonated with voters who elected a challenger when it came time for his re-election.

He was found to have withheld evidence from the defense in a murder case, was blamed when separate high-profile sex assault cases against Penn State football players fell apart, and was criticized by a colleague in another county for not thoroughly investigating Gricar’s disappearance.

Current District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller defeated Madeira in the 2009 general election.

After the Jerry Sandusky child abuse broke in November 2011, Madeira said he referred an investigation into whether Sandusky molested a Clinton County boy to the state attorney general in 2009. Madeira said he had a conflict of interest because a brother-in-law was one of Sandusky’s adopted sons.

Since July 31, Madeira has been working at Penn State’s Global Programs Office in a temporary role as the university’s global collaborations coordinator. Spokeswoman Annemarie Mountz said the role is in charge of ensuring that Penn State’s agreements with international institutions meet the university’s policies.