Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Special Prosecutor Appointed To Handle Obama Petition-Forging Case

St. Joseph County Prosecutor Michael Dvorak has successfully petitioned to have a special prosecutor named to handle prosecution of the case of four Democratic officials charged yesterday for their respective roles in the forging of 2008 primary ballot petitions, including petitions for Barack Obama's presidential campaign. Dvorak asked for a special prosecutor because he could well be called as a witness in the case since his signature was among the hundreds of forged signatures on Obama's presidential nominating petitions circulated in St. Joseph County. Earlier, I questioned how Dvorak could possibly retain control of the case given that he was a victim of the alleged forgery. Yet he continued to maintain control of the case and presented it to a grand jury, which returned the indictments announced against the four Democratic officials, including the former county chairman, Butch Morgan.

The South Bend Tribune is reporting that former Vanderburgh Co. Prosecutor Stanley Levco has been named as a special prosecutor in the case. Levko has been very active in the Democratic Party. Defense attorneys for the accused had called on Dvorak to step aside as soon as the indictments were announced. It appears the government's key witness in the case is a former board of registration worker who initially participated in the forgery scheme but later refused continued participation as it escalated. Pam Brunette and Beverly Shelton, two of the accused, were relieved of their jobs in the board of registrations as soon as the indictments were announced. Another accused, Dustin Blythe, had previously left the office to pursue other employment. Morgan was forced out as county chairman after the possible existence of forged signatures surfaced last year and replaced by State Sen. John Broden.

No comments: