Saturday, March 27, 2010


Of the 322 criminal charges Gubernatorial Candidate Tom Corbett filed against 12 House Democrats that have been adjudicated, there have been 50 convictions. Yes, that's a success rate of 15.5%.

There were 35 charges brought against Mike Veon and Annamarie Perretta-Rosepink in connection with Beaver Initiative for Growth that were dismissed.

There were six charges brought against Sean Ramaley in connection with his employment as a Veon staffer. Ramaley was acquitted of all six.

There were 114 charges dismissed against defendants who pleaded guilty.

And the other four defendants who went to trial were acquitted of 117 charges.

The defendants have asked for a mistrial based on the jurors' wildly-improper attempt to investigate the allegations on their own, and they have indicated they intend to appeal. If their efforts are successful, Corbett's conviction rate drops to less than 9%.

Corbett and his supporters were bound to claim victory even if only a single charge out of the hundreds stuck. But no matter how much of a political victory Corbett and his supporters want to claim, anyone familiar with criminal proceedings would call the 15.5% conviction rate for the investigation a dismal failure.

Which, of course, is fine with the Corbett team, because the charges were brought for their political value and not their legal validity. Besides, no one's going to call the future Governor's investigation a failure publicly.

The Corbett campaign has tried to downplay the millions of dollars in taxpayer money and thousands of hours of manpower it has invested in this fiasco, pointing out that the dozens of state employees who've devoted a majority of their work hours to this case would have been paid whether working on this politically-motivated case or some other.

(Ironically, the prosecutorial arm of the Corbett campaign scoffed at that very line of reasoning when it was offered as a defense in the Veon trial)

Lead prosecutor E. Marc Constanzo sputtered that Veon was convicted in seven of the 11 "criminal episodes" the Corbett campaign developed. (He's wrong: Veon was charged in 12 "episodes") But if that's the measure by which the Corbett campaign wants to be judged, what does it say that a jury cleared one defendant in all three "episodes" in which he was charged, another in eight of nine "episodes," and another in four of five? Throw in Ramaley's acquittal and the dismissal of the BIG charges, Corbett's success rate as measured by "episode" units is still only 28% for the five defendants who went to trial.

The voters have to examine two possibilities:

1)The Corbett campaign knew prosecutors couldn't prove the vast majority of the charges they brought, and proceeded anyway, wasting vast amounts of taxpayer resources on political gain.

2) The Corbett campaign mistakenly thought prosecutors could prove the vast majority of the charges they brought, wasting vast amounts of taxpayer resources on their own ignorance and incompetence.


Anonymous said...

Enjoy your last days of blogging freedom. You're still going to jail Bret.

Anonymous said...

Corbett charges two with intimidating and bullying witnesses.

Isn't this a page out of the Karl Rove playbook - accuse others of what you're guilty of to confuse people?

Anonymous said...

It saddens me to think of someone so filled with hatred that he or she would enjoy the idea of someone else going to jail. Although many of us want certain people brought to justice to stop the harm they bring to others, how can we truly delight in someone suffering? What kind of human being would be so vitriolic? Someone who has never suffered? Someone who has never stumbled? Someone who has no belief that as we show mercy we shall receive it?

Anonymous said...

Appeals will prevent anyone going to jail. Corebett OAG has more futurem probelms of their own.

Based on what I am reading!

Anonymous said...

Pray that justice shall stream down on Pennsylvania.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Good points! But you forgot to mention all of those who committed crimes, were never charged and were given immunity from the start ....for example, Mike's other girlfriend, Melissa, who received a bonus, a promotion, a pay raise and a boob job with taxpayer money!!!!

Why immunity for her? Because prosecutors want to present her as a credible witness!!!! Give me a break!

Prosecutors should be required to disclose exactly who their witnesses are and WHY those witnesses need immunity!!!!

KNOWING and CONCEALING the scope of illegal activity committed by a "star witness" is IMHO, at least immoral, if not illegal. The jury and the public should be made aware of all the facts regarding witnesses such as these so that opinions can be formed based on ALL facts and not just the information that the prosecutors choose to selectively reveal.

This is why Mike suddenly couldn't remember if he'd had a relationship with anyone who received a bonus other than Angela-(Gov R and Sen BC are my FB friends and AFLCIO Pres Rich Trumka is my cousin)-B.

If I were a juror & found out that prosecutors HID information that might influence my opinion of their witnesses, I'd question the prosecutors' judgment, tactics and motives! I'd wonder if they REALLY were striving for justice.

Anonymous said...

I've been living to see you,

Dying to see you but it shouldn't be like this,

This was unexpected, what do I do now?

Could we start again, please.

I've been very hopeful so far.

Now for the first time I think we're going wrong.

Hurry up and tell me this is just a dream.

Could we start again please!

I think you've made your point now,

You even gone a bit too far to get this false message home for your campaign,

Before it gets too frightening we ought to call a halt,

So could we start again please!