Baltimore attorney Susan L. Burke, who rose to prominence battling the Department of Defense and its contractors in court, said in an email to supporters Saturday that she will not run for Sen. Barbara Mikulski's seat.
Burke previously said she was giving serious consideration to seeking the seat, but said she decided her law career and case she is currently handling are more important for now.
"I simply could not assure myself that my withdrawal from these active matters to campaign would not hurt the citizens that I represent," Burke said.
Burke most recently attracted public attention when she represented a Naval Academy midshipman who said she had been sexually assaulted by three football players at a party. She also has represented victims of abuse of the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq and people killed by U.S. military contractors.
In a surprise announcement this month, Mikulski announced her intention to retire from the Senate after the 2016 election, leading a crowded field of other state politicians and aspirants to position themselves for her job. So far, Reps. Donna Edwards and Chris Van Hollen, both Democrats, have formally announced that they will run.
In the email to supporters Burke left open the possibility of running for an elected position in the future.
"I am honored by the immediate support so many offered and the encouragement that I received," she said. "But this is not my time."