After previous, multiple contacts with the Fayette County Office of District Attorney, on Wednesday, August 31, 2016, the writer of this blog was informed by Fayette County District Attorney Richard E. Bower that he would not investigate/prosecute the 3rd Referral  
of the Fayette County Election Board -- i.e., allegations of election fraud against state Rep. Timothy S. Mahoney (D-51) which were referred to the Fayette County Office of District Attorney "to be reviewed and a determination made by the district attorney's office" on May 24, 2012, by a unanimous vote of the Fayette County Election Board (Ambrosini, Zapotosky, and Zimmerlink), and which the Pennsylvania Election Code mandates be investigated.

See 25 P.S. § 2642(i):  The county boards of elections, within their respective counties, shall exercise, in the manner provided by this act, all powers granted to them by this act, and shall perform all the duties imposed upon them by this act, which shall include the following:
(i) To investigate election frauds, irregularities and violations of this act, and to report all suspicious circumstances to the district attorney. [Emphasis added.]

In the article, “The Heneks-Mahoney Grand Jury Connection,” this space covered the mandatory requirement to investigate thusly:

Because the Fayette County Election Board did not exercise its power and perform its imposed duty to investigate (but instead referred the matter to DA Heneks [now DA Bower]), the law, through the requirement to investigate, takes the 3rd Referral out of the realm of "possible exploration" and firmly places it into the realm of mandatory investigation.  The district attorney's prosecutorial discretion does not supersede the law to which it is subject, and grand jury secrecy laws do not exist so that district attorneys can shield themselves from public scrutiny, lest the citizenry find out that the requirement of mandatory investigation has been turned into non-investigation.

This space extensively covered ex-DA Heneks' non-investigation here 

Heneks actually was in attendance at the May 24, 2012, election board meeting where Mahoney admitted to altering and signing his Affidavits of Circulator.

Fayette County District Attorney Richard E. Bower is intimately aware of the evidence against Mahoney, aware of the putrid injustice of the sealed 5th Presentment (which may or may not pertain to the 2nd Referral) and aware of the non-investigation of the 3rd Referral of the Fayette County Election Board.  

In stark contrast, to his non-investigation of the 3rd Referral, former DA Jack R. Heneks, Jr., investigated the 1st Referral of the Fayette County Election Board which resulted in three election-related presentments and prosecutions. DA Bower is not without knowledge of these prosecutions, for Bower, who was then in private practice, was the attorney of record for Walter "Deb" Wiltrout (see Page 3 of the docket sheet), who was prosecuted on charges even the Fayette County Grand Jury No. 2 termed de minimus (minimal).

Bower's contra-law, faulty, non-evidence-based decision not to investigate/prosecute the 3rd Referral mimics Heneks' non-investigation of the 3rd Referral.

It turns a blind eye to Heneks' non-investigation of alleged election fraud and perjury in Fayette County -- alleged crimes for which state law mandates investigation.

Therefore, Bower's horrid decision stands as an injustice -- a more putrid injustice than that perpetrated by Heneks himself.

So much for "Want Tough."


Today, September 12, 2016, marks the 21-month anniversary of the sealing of the 5th Presentment of Fayette County Grand Jury No. 2. -- an Order issued by Presiding Judge Steve P. Leskinen on December 12, 2014.

To view the docket sheet entry of the Order Presenting SEALED Grand Jury Fifth Presentment, see the top of Page 7 of 8 of the Fayette County Grand Jury No. 2 Docket Sheet.

For approximately thirteen months of the former administration of then-District Attorney Jack R. Heneks, Jr., and now for more than eight months of the current administration of Fayette County District Attorney Richard E. Bower, the 5th Presentment of Fayette County Grand Jury No. 2 has remained sealed.

In a previous post in this space we pondered the possible reasons for the dormancy of the 5th Presentment.

Other presentments from Fayette County Grand Jury No. 2 have been prosecuted and penalties have been meted out.  Juxtaposing the prosecutions of other presentments and the 21-month sealing of the 5th Presentment raises serious questions.  While a previous post in this space covered some of those questions, it bears reiteration that the most serious question is the one which regards equal justice under law.

When the Fayette County Grand Jury No.2 issued a presentment, by law, it had to also be approved by Presiding Judge Steve Leskinen.  Thus, presentments are not issued haphazardly.  For a presentment to issue against an individual, evidence must exist that points to a crime.  Moreover, as the district attorney leads the grand jury in its investigation and in the issuance of presentments, the district attorney usually follows the recommendations of a grand jury.  In fact, the case where a district attorney refuses to follow the recommendations of a grand jury is virtually unheard of.  Why would a district attorney urge a presentment to be issued only never to bring an indictment?

This leads us to the heart of the matter:  It is inherently unequal justice under law to prosecute individuals under other presentments while the individual named in the sealed (for 21 months!) 5th Presentment remains unnamed, unindicted, and unprosecuted.

Grand jury secrecy laws are in place to elicit testimony and to shield witnesses from threats; grand jury secrecy laws are not in place to shield district attorneys and judges from public scrutiny and accountability.

It's high time the public received some answers on why the 5th Presentment has remained sealed for 21 months and when it will be unsealed.

After 21 months, it's time for Fayette County Grand Jury Presiding Judge Steve P. Leskinen and Fayette County District Attorney Richard E. Bower to be held accountable to the public which paid for the grand jury and which has every right to know what is being done/what will be done with the sealed 5th Presentment of Fayette County Grand Jury No. 2.

Companion articles:

As Sealed 5th Presentment Approaches 11 Months, DA Heneks Refuses Comment 

The Heneks-Mahoney Grand Jury Connection 

The Prosecution of Walter "Deb" Wiltrout, the Non-Investigation of the 3rd Referral, and the Absence of a 9th Presentment 

Fayette County Grand Jury 5th Presentment Sealing Reaches 1 Year