Tags: joan orie melvin | convicted | judge | escapes | mea culpa

Joan Orie Melvin, Convicted Judge, Escapes Cuffed Mea Culpa

Image: Joan Orie Melvin, Convicted Judge, Escapes Cuffed Mea Culpa
In this May 7, 2013 file photo, former state Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin, leaves court in Pittsburgh after she and her sister, Janine Orie, were sentenced for their February convictions on corruption in Orie Melvin's election campaign. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

By    |   Friday, 22 Aug 2014 12:50 PM

Joan Orie Melvin, a former Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice convicted on corruption charges last year, lost her appeal and will have to serve three years of house arrest but won't have to apologize in handcuffs.

Judge Christine Donohue, writing for a three-judge panel, struck down a quirky provision that Melvin write an apology to her former staff and fellow Supreme Court jurists on a photo taken of her in handcuffs, calling it an "unorthodox gimmick" meant to shame the former judge, according to The Patriot-News.

Donohue, though, wrote that the panel essentially left the rest of the charges intact, reaffirming Melvin's theft of services, conspiracy and misapplication of entrusted property convictions.

Urgent: Do You Approve Or Disapprove of President Obama's Job Performance? Vote Now in Urgent Poll

Investigators charged that Melvin illegally used her own staff as Superior Court judge, according to the newspaper, along with that of former state Sen. Jane Orie, her sister, during her 2003 and 2009 campaigns for Supreme Court judge.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported the three-judge panel rejected the ex-judge's argument that she only violated a court rule to stay away from political activities.

"None of the crimes for which she was prosecuted or convicted specifically proscribes political activity," the ruling stated. "Instead she was prosecuted for the use, or rather the misuse, of her judicial staff in violation of criminal statutes prohibiting the diversion of services belonging to the commonwealth to her own personal benefit. The political nature of the conduct did not serve as the basis of the criminal conviction."

The court also said Orie Melvin's argument about her staff's productivity was irrelevant, noting that she had employees doing work beyond that specific to the court.

"To establish a theft of services under (Pennsylvania law), the commonwealth only had to establish that Orie Melvin utilized her judicial staff for purposes other than judicial work," the ruling stated. "The only appropriate inquiry ... is whether Orie Melvin required her judicial staff to perform, for her personal benefit, non-judicial [i.e., political] duties, and it is irrelevant that they also performed their judicial tasks."

Orie Melvin must also serve probation, volunteer in a soup kitchen and pay a $20,000 fine, according to The Patriot-News.

Urgent: Assess Your Heart Attack Risk in Minutes. Click Here.

Related Stories:

© 2017 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

 
1Like our page
2Share
TheWire
Joan Orie Melvin, a former Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice convicted on corruption charges last year, lost her appeal and will have to serve three years of house arrest but won't have to apologize in handcuffs.
joan orie melvin, convicted, judge, escapes, mea culpa
403
2014-50-22
Friday, 22 Aug 2014 12:50 PM
Newsmax Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved