Center for Leadership

Katayoun Copeland

Delaware County District Attorney

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As a graduate of The Baldwin School, Bryn Mawr College and Temple University’s Beasley School of Law, Ms. Copeland has a distinguished 25-year prosecutorial career. Throughout the past six years she has been a member of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania assigned to its Narcotics and Organized Crime Section. District Attorney Copeland previously served for 19 years in the Delaware County District Attorney’s Office.

District Attorney Copeland ‘s tenure in the District Attorney ‘s Office began in 1992 as an Assistant District Attorney during which time she was assigned to the office’s trial division, as well as its drug task force. In 2000, she became chief of drug enforcement overseeing the investigation and prosecution of these cases countywide and the office’s newly established Criminal-Terrorism Unit coordinating with local, state and federal law enforcement to evaluate matters linked to national security concerns. In 2004, District Attorney Copeland rose to the position of Deputy District Attorney while continuing to supervise and manage the office’s terrorism-intelligence concerns, as well as its drug enforcement efforts.

As a member of the United States Attorney ‘s Office since 2011, her responsibilities included working with federal investigators and prosecuting matters in the federal district courts involving international drug operations, armed robberies, large-scale racketeering conspiracies and attempted murders. She also successfully defended such convictions before the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.

District Attorney Copeland has been very active throughout her prosecutorial career in professional
education having taught for a number of years at the Delaware County Municipal Police Academy and as an instructor for the Pennsylvania State Police, the Pennsylvania District Attorney ‘s Association, as well as more recently at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and El Paso Intelligence Center training program.

In addition to her well-honed prosecutorial skills, District Attorney Copeland readily appreciated broader systematic criminal justice concerns and was instrumental in establishing Delaware County’s first drug treatment court and its veteran’s treatment court. She has continued to recognize these restorative and re-entry issues through her current, collaborative efforts to initiate a federal drug treatment court program.

District Attorney Copeland, in recognition of her ongoing dedication and commitment to public service during her local and federal tenures as a prosecutor has received various awards and accolades from numerous agencies including the Marple Township, Media Borough, and Upper Darby Township police departments, as well as the Pennsylvania State Police, Delaware County Criminal Investigation Division, Drug Enforcement Administration and a Special Achievement Award for the successful prosecution of a violent, large-scale Philadelphia drug trafficking gang from at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

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