Fact-Finding, or Sightseeing?

National Journal
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Jan. 9, 2014, 7:48 a.m.

An in­vest­ig­at­or found “in­suf­fi­cient evid­ence to prove” that Dep. MT state Aud. Wal­ter Sch­weitzer, broth­er of MT Gov/DGA Chair Bri­an Sch­weizter, “il­leg­ally so­li­cited polit­ic­al dona­tions from em­ploy­ees in a state build­ing, as an ex-em­ploy­ee charged.” In­vest­ig­at­or Eliza­beth Kal­eva said she found “in­suf­fi­cient evid­ence to de­term­ine that Sch­weitzer was hand­ing out in­vit­a­tions and ac­cept­ing con­tri­bu­tions” in the aud­it­or’s of­fice for a fun­draiser for House can­did­ate Den­nis Mc­Don­ald (D) (John­son, Billings Gaz­ette, 10/7).

Don’t Drink And Cap­tain Boats

MT state Sen. Greg Barkus (R) “is fa­cing felony charges” in the Aug. “boat­ing ac­ci­dent that in­jured” Rep. Denny Re­hberg (R-MT) and left his state dir., Dustin Frost, “in a coma for 10 days.” Barkus was charged with “crim­in­al en­dan­ger­ment and two counts of neg­li­gent vehicu­lar as­sault.”

Barkus “al­legedly crashed a boat at high speed onto a rocky em­bank­ment” after “a night of drink­ing,” in­clud­ing “scotch and wine.” His blood-al­co­hol level was “twice the leg­al lim­it,” which Re­hberg said he was “sur­prised” to learn, be­cause “he didn’t ap­pear to be im­paired to me” (Con­gress­DailyAM, 10/8).

Let The Pos­sibly Fake Re­cord Show

A NY state cm­sn “fined” Dar­ren Dopp, ex-comm. dir. for ex-NY Gov. Eli­ot Spitzer (D), $10K for hav­ing “mis­used his of­fi­cial po­s­i­tion in an ef­fort to dis­cred­it Spitzter’s main polit­ic­al foe,” then-NY House Maj. Lead­er Joseph Bruno (R). The state Pub­lic In­teg­rity Cm­sn found Dopp “had the State Po­lice cre­ate of­fiic­al look­ing doc­u­ments” about Bruno’s “use of state air­craft” and then “gave the doc­u­ments, which wouldn’t or­din­ar­ily ex­ist, to a re­port­er.”

Dopp: “With this de­cision, I be­come the first pub­lic in­form­a­tion of­ficer in his­tory to be sanc­tioned for re­leas­ing pub­lic re­cords in re­sponse to a me­dia re­quest. This de­cision is un­foun­ded, er­ro­neous and tain­ted. I in­tend to sue” the cm­sn (Bau­man, AP, 10/8).

Fridge Would Be Nice, Boca Bur­ger Boxes Would Be Bet­ter

Ex-Rep. Bill Jef­fer­son’s (D-LA) at­tys “have a li­en” on Jef­fer­son’s DC home, “ac­cord­ing to re­cent bank­ruptcy court fil­ings,” but it’s “not clear wheth­er the li­en in­cludes the home’s re­fri­ger­at­or, were bur­ied in soy bur­ger and pie crust boxes” was the in­fam­ous $90K in “un­marked bills” un­covered dur­ing the ‘05 FBI raid. The fridge “could bring in ex­tra rev­en­ue from a col­lect­or” (Tilove, New Or­leans Times-Pi­cay­une, 10/7).

No Snitches

At­tys “for the man ac­cused of mur­der­ing” ex-fed­er­al in­tern Chandra Levy “are try­ing to fend off testi­mony from jail­house snitches as well as an aca­dem­ic ex­pert” in the “eso­ter­ic” field of “geo­graph­ic pro­fil­ing,” which “aims to cal­cu­late the most likely loc­a­tions where a seri­al of­fend­er will strike” (Doyle, Mc­Clatchy, 10/8).

De­tails De­tails

A cous­in of Karla Gir­aldo test­i­fied in NY state Sen. Hiram Mon­ser­rate’s (D) as­sault tri­al 10/7 that Gir­aldo “was ‘bor­racha’ rather than ‘mareada’ — more durnk than tipsy — the night her face was cut.” Mon­ser­rate’s at­tys “sought to cast doubt on the re­li­ab­il­ity” of state­ments Gir­aldo made “in­crim­in­at­ing” Mon­ser­rate “as her de­lib­er­ate at­tack­er.” The de­fense “left open the pos­sib­il­ity” it may call Mon­ser­rate as its fi­nal wit­ness (Blu­menth­al, New York Times, 10/8).

Spared Some More Em­bar­rass­ment

Ex-Rep. Tim Ma­honey (D-FL) “and his wife of 24 years have agreed to a 50-50 split of their as­sets, keep­ing the con­ten­tious sep­ar­a­tion from go­ing to tri­al,” an atty said 10/7 (Turn­er, TCPalm.com, 10/7).

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