Apollo Borough’s solicitor careened today, August 19, 2021, at a supposed Contempt Hearing, stemming from a July 16, 2019, Final Order from the Office of Open Records, that Apollo Borough tried their best - but 'very poorly-maintained records' prevented them from answering even the simplest of requests, well over two years later.
Please click the above document for the complete transcript. Let's break this down, SHALL WE?
Page 3, Line 21 - The importance of accepting and 'putting on record' the admission of exhibits is that Apollo Borough's solicitor, has, in the past, ignored the Plaintiffs' attorney's request to enter other exhibits, which would prove damaging to the Defendants. The solicitor consciously ignored the requests.
Page 4, Lines 23 to Page 5, Lines 5 - Here you see the Apollo Borough Solicitor careening about not knowing what 'they' (the Judge, Plaintiffs' attorney, and the Apollo Borough Solicitor (Mr. Andreassi - in the Judge's chambers) were talking about! How a seasoned attorney with over 20 plus years of experience could be in such intimate company, in the Judge's chambers, but not understand what was being said is FAR beyond me, my Hubs, or our attorney. Even well over two years, back in court, the solicitor needs additional time. The court then responds with, "All right." The court then immediately asks the Defendant's attorney - if there are objections to hard evidence that the Plaintiffs' attorney wants to object? Really?! Typically, evidence is just that - evidence - and entered on the record. It is hard material fact, and cannot be disputed. Remember, we are dealing with work product - documentation.
Page 5, Lines 6-12 - Plaintiffs attorney placed all exhibits into a binder. Why did Plaintiff's attorney do that? Because Apollo Borough's solicitor has never kept track of what should legally be produced. AB's (Apollo Borough) solicitor from the beginning relied on Plaintiffs' attorney to keep that record (paid for by the Plaintiffs) - even though it was his clients that were to produce these documents! Plaintiffs' paid their attorney to share his work paid for by his clients, even though the Plaintiffs' Right To Know requests stated which documents they were seeking.
Page 5, Lines 13-25, Page 6, Lines 1-5 - AB's solicitor concedes that they have done nothing, and the court agrees. Then, the court abrogates the Final Determination of the Office of Open Records - dated July 16, 2019, and instead establishes the date at June 2020. What? Then, the court asks the Defendants if that date is acceptable..... SMH. Defendants agree. Why wouldn't they? Is this a judge or a friend to the solicitor? The Office of Open Records is a Quasi-Judicial Tribunal branch of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania with some Executive powers. IE - they are a legitimate, binding court! For all practical purposes (because they do not follow Civil Rules of Procedure) - think Judge Advocate General - Military Tribunal.
Page 9, Lines 15-23 - Note that Mr. Andreassi does not wish to put ANYTHING on the record. Plaintiffs' attorney requests a short closing.... Strap yourselves in peeps, you are in for one. WILD. ride! The 'snark' begins with Mr. Andreassi! HAHA! Get your beverage of choice ready!! ..just don't spew it all over your keyboard and computer screen when reading! :)
Page 17, Lines 11-25, Page 18 (all), page 19, Lines 1-15 - After Plaintiffs attorney finishes his closing statements, Mr. Andreassi decides that he does wish to make a closing argument. To begin, AB's solicitor asks for the court to RECONSIDER its decision from an October 2020 Memorandum and ORDER. Whaaaat? What does this mean? Well - if you are following along - Plaintiffs filed Contempt Charges in September 2020. The court (Judge Mcclister) then wrote a Memorandum and Order two weeks later. In this filing by the Judge, neither we (the Plaintiffs), nor our counsel or his law firm could tell us what this Memorandum and Order by the court, Judge Mcclister meant. So, we (Hubs and I, Pro Se) appealed to the Commonwealth court, to ask them what this was? The Judge (Mcclister) would not allow us to have an informal status conference call to figure out where this Memorandum and Order rendered our case. Is it a Memorandum? Is it an Order? In this 'Memorandum and Order' that the court wrote, it said that Hubs and I would get nothing in any way - either monetarily or work product wise (documentation)! Because after approximately four months of having all of this, the court still had not rendered a decision. Hubs and I, as Pro Se, filed this appeal to the Commonwealth Court. We then decided to withdraw it, once our question was answered. SO - when AB's solicitor talks about a reconsideration from the October ruling - ??? No one knows what this means - because it was WITHDRAWN. It is moot! Then AB's solicitor goes on to whine that the time to file a Motion to Reconsider has long since passed... ahhh, no one filed an MTR in this instant case. ?? Anyway - moving along - the AB solicitor then goes on to state that the Court has dealt with it and those appeals were denied. ??? Again? Which appeals? Who knows? Then Mr. Andreassi states that, "That case is over." ??? Which case? We are ALL now confused. Then, in the next statement, AB's solicitor states that our attorney is asking the Court to find the Defendants in contempt because it FAILED to comply with the court's order. YES!! He got that one right!! Why? Because Apollo Borough DID FAIL at complying! That is what this hearing is all about! Then, the solicitor (and former DA for Armstrong County, who lost the Judge election to Mcclister, and works for the current DA's husband's law firm) then states, "That is the time period that we are dealing with, we would suggest to the court." WHEW! I don't know what this means, either. No one does. The timeline has already been established (read Page 4, lines 4 through 14). What is AB's solicitor talking about? Who knows? Only he does! Remember, peeps, a wise man once said - nothing. Umhum. All of this. On the record.
OK. Drink up. Ready? Then, the AB solicitor whines on about that since the "Summer" of 2019 Apollo Borough has answered more than 50 Right To Know Law requests. Ahhh, no. Those 50 plus requests spanned two and a half years, ALL of which you did not respond! Hubs and I HAD to appeal them. Then, the AB solicitor whines on about our appeals. YES! We appealed because you DID NOTHING! ...then he very mistakenly whines about Hubs and I appealing to the county court, the Commonwealth Court, the Superior Court, and now the Federal Court. ?? Noooo. This case HAS NOT yet gone to the Commonwealth Court. It might. No one knows, let alone visiting the Superior Court or Federal Court or Supreme Court, yet! ??? Whatever. THEN - Mr. Andreassi states what a long - drawn out case it has been. You got that right! I will reserve the answer to that for sharing ALL documentation leading up to this point. ALL eyes on YOU, Mr. Andreassi - to the tune of 60,000USD paid for by the taxpayers of Apollo Borough to the Charlton Law Firm (which is the current DA's husband's law firm - nothing like double dipping, eh, District Attorney Charlton?)! Solicitor is the right word! Soliciting the taxpayer's money! Take another sip. Bathroom break!
NOW. This next statement. Mr. Andreassi states, "The court has considered ALL of the prior arguments and has made its decision." Think about that.
What 'prior' arguments? Only the Judge and Andreassi knows! "Those decisions have been appealed and DEALT WITH and one is currently pending appeal." Hmm? No one but Mr. Andreassi and the court, Mcclister, knows what is being spoken of here.... dare I say ex parte communication? I will reserve my answer for that when I post about my criminal trial in front of my personal judge - Mcclister, and Andreassi stepping in for the DA - even though he is NOT staff, and did not enter an appearance. You read that correctly.
Then Andreassi says that AB has limited staff. I will not bore you with the details, but with a population of approximately 1300 people, they have a secretary/treasurer that works 35 hours a week, and an assistant that works 25-30 hours per week, in addition to help from local high school students wishing to learn more about government (insert genuflecting here, Lord Have Mercy). I will reserve the break down of their job duties for a future post, and include documentation of them helping everyone from the zoning officer to the Uniform Construction Code officer. But for now, let's move along....
Blah, blah, blah... then AB's solicitor goes on to state the dismal attempts at record keeping, that the borough is trying to answer questions (but is too small), and that mistakes are a given. Maybe - but well after two years - there is no excuse. Period. Most of these requests were very simple and would dance in any property buyers tongue. You just don't want to answer ANY request that Hubs and I make, even simple ones. REMEMBER - my livelihood depended on this!
Then in a weird turn of thinking, Mr. Andreassi says that Hubs and I have a vendetta against the borough. Really?! A vendetta? What does that mean?
I sought to open a handmade soap and sundries shop. What vendetta? Such a thug and mobster term! Mr. Andreassi knew as far back as February of 2019 that there was nothing wrong, that Apollo Borough had nothing to stand on, as told to our attorney; But, he and the District Attorney chose to prosecute me and Hubs CRIMINALLY, not CIVALLY- for taking a building from blight to beauty. Who benefited from this? Certainly not Apollo Borough taxpayers. Certainly not my business. But - it sure looks like Mr. Andreassi and the DA's husband law firm benefited! Who holds the vendetta in this instant case, or any of these cases? Apollo Borough taxpayers - you got the short end of the stick! As for AB's solicitor - he needs some cheese with his whine.
MORE TO FOLLOW! Stay tuned!! Let's talk criminal law next, SHALL WE? :) !
UPDATE - For those following along, and based on emails that I have received, here is some lingo (language) of the court...
- Court of Common Pleas - the court, In the USA, in every county - your LOCAL AGENCY court house (this definition was established by the Federal Court system).
- Solicitor - the chief law officer of a municipality, county, or government department
- District Attorney - the prosecuting officer of a judicial district - the county attorney
- OOR - the Office of Open Records for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
- Right to Know Law , and the Sunshine Act - serve as a source for citizens, agencies, public officials and members of the media in obtaining public records of their government and adherence to transparent public meetings.
Vendetta - A term used by mobster/thug attorneys that believe that they are threatened by citizens that stick up for themselves in the court and do not like it! :)
Plaintiff - a person who brings a legal action ( On my blog - Scott & Janet Brunermer)
Defendant - a person or group against whom a criminal or civil action is brought : someone who is being sued or accused of committing a crime (On my blog, unless otherwise noted, Apollo Borough, Armstrong County, Pennsylvania, USA)