“Former Pennsylvania Attorney General Is Sentenced to Prison”

 

 

Shylock:

The pound of flesh, which I demand of him,

Is dearly bought; ’tis mine and I will have it.

— Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice, Act 4, Scene 1

 

 

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re: “Kathleen Kane, Former Pennsylvania Attorney General, Is Sentenced to Prison,” The New York Times, October 24, 2016

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/10/25/us/kathleen-kane-former-pennsylvania-attorney-general-is-sentenced-to-prison.html

The article states:

The brief, unlikely political career of Kathleen G. Kane, Pennsylvania’s brightest rising star when she was elected attorney general less than four years ago, came to a humiliating close on Monday when a judge sentenced her to 10 to 23 months in prison for her conviction on charges of perjury and abuse of her office.

She was convicted of illegally leaking grand jury records in an attempt to discredit a critic and then lying about it to a different grand jury. In August, a Common Pleas Court jury here found her guilty of two felony perjury charges and seven misdemeanor counts, forcing her to resign from office.

She broke down in tears on Monday while testifying at her sentencing hearing, pleading with the judge to consider her two teenage sons.

“Maybe I deserve everything I get; they don’t,” she said. “I am not going to ask for your mercy because I don’t care about me anymore.”

Called to testify on her behalf, her son Chris, 15, said: “My mom is like my rock. We just know that we can’t lose our mom.”

She faced a maximum sentence of 12 to 24 years in prison, but her lawyers argued that the loss of her career and reputation was punishment enough.

Judge Wendy Demchick-Alloy, however, said, “Any lesser sentence than total confinement will absolutely depreciate the seriousness of the crime.”

Ms. Kane grew up in Scranton and worked there as an assistant district attorney, specializing in prosecuting sex crimes.

“In her first few months in office, she rejected [former Pennsylvania Governor Tom] Corbett’s plan to privatize management of the state lottery, refused to defend in court the state’s ban on gay marriage, offered only a lukewarm defense of a voter identification law, and exposed corruption at the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission. She also gave a promotion to her twin sister — who had worked for years in the attorney general’s office — prompting accusations of nepotism.

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Commentary
:

I don’t care what the facts of this case are. I would care if it were a heinous crime. This case does not involve a heinous crime.

Figuring out what Ms. Kane is guilty of is difficult for the average reader – unacquainted with the case and Pennsylvania politics – like myself.

But, there is no point is sending Ms. Kane to jail.

Separating her from her teenage sons.

It is indicated in other articles about the case that she is separated from her husband and is undergoing divorce proceedings. Therefore, it would seem that the hardship of her being separated for a year or two from her sons will be even worse than if her children lived in a situation where there was an intact marriage with two parents at home.

Of course, none of this mattered, or matters, to the judge. She has to make a point. Has to have her pound of flesh.

It appears that Ms. Kane not only got on the wrong side of the law, but that she was also on the wrong side politically, as far as many public officials were concerned. Perhaps she was a scheming, devious, manipulative, power hungry office holder. Perhaps she abused her office.

I still don’t think she should be sent to prison.

The prison system is full of people who should not be there. Keeping them locked up does no good. It’s a system that perpetuates cruelty, plain and simple. There is no other way to construe or view it.

 — Roger W. Smith

       October 2016

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See also:

“Pennsylvania Attorney General Quits on Heels of Perjury Conviction,” The New York Times, August 16, 2016

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/08/17/us/pennsylvania-attorney-general-kathleen-kane-resigns.html

“Pennsylvania’s Attorney General Is Convicted on All Counts,” The New York Times, August 15, 2016

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/08/16/us/trial-kathleen-kane-pennsylvania-attorney-general.html

“Perjury Trial Begins for Kathleen Kane, Pennsylvania Attorney General,” The New York Times, August 9, 2016

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/08/10/us/perjury-trial-begins-for-kathleen-kane-pennsylvania-attorney-general.html

“Pennsylvania Attorney General Faces Arraignment,” The New York Times, August 8, 2015

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2015/08/09/us/pennsylvania-attorney-general-faces-arraignment.html

“Pennsylvania Attorney General, Kathleen Kane, Charged in Leak Case,” The New York Times, August 6, 2015

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2015/08/07/us/pennsylvania-attorney-general-kathleen-kane-charged-in-leak-case.html

“Fall in Fortunes for Pennsylvania Attorney General,” The New York Times, February 3, 2015

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2015/02/04/us/pennsylvania-state-attorney-kathleen-kane-charges.html

“Grand Jury Recommends Pennsylvania Attorney General Be Charged With Perjury,” The New York Times, January 21, 2015

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2015/01/22/us/grand-jury-recommends-pennsylvania-attorney-general-be-charged-with-perjury.html

About Roger W. Smith

Roger W. Smith is a writer and independent scholar based in New York City. His experience includes freelance writing and editing, business writing, book reviewing, and the teaching of writing and literature as an adjunct professor. Mr. Smith's interests include personal essays and opinion pieces; American and world literature; culture, especially books and reading; current issues that involve social, moral, and philosophical views; and experiences of daily living from a ground level perspective. He hosts separate websites devoted to the authors Theodore Dreiser and Pitirim A. Sorokin and to classical music as well as family history/genealogy.
This entry was posted in criminal "justice", personal views of Roger W. Smith and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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