Kath­leen Kane be­gins stint in jail

The Boyertown Area Times - - LOCAL NEWS - By Carl Hessler Jr. [email protected]­tu­ry­media.com @mont­co­court­news on Twitter

For­mer Pennsylvania At­tor­ney Gen­eral Kath­leen Grana­han Kane’s first day in jail in­cluded a full-body scan and search and med­i­cal screen­ings as she be­gan serv­ing her sen­tence for a 2016 per­jury con­vic­tion.

Kane, 52, en­tered the Montgomery County Cor­rec­tional Fa­cil­ity shortly be­fore 8 a.m. Thurs­day to be­gin serv­ing a 10-to-23-month sen­tence in con­nec­tion with her Au­gust 2016 con­vic­tion of charges she or­ches­trated the il­le­gal dis­clo­sure of se­cret grand jury in­for­ma­tion to the me­dia and then en­gaged in acts de­signed to con­ceal and cover up her con­duct.

Dur­ing in­take pro­ce­dures at the fa­cil­ity, all pris­on­ers ini­tially go through a full­body scan and then a search, ac­cord­ing to John Cor­co­ran, Montgomery County Di­rec­tor of Com­mu­ni­ca­tions. Book­ing pro­ce­dures also con­sist of ob­tain­ing and se­cur­ing an in­mate’s per­sonal prop­erty, record­ing their per­sonal in­for­ma­tion and com­plet­ing med­i­cal and men­tal health eval­u­a­tions be­fore they are is­sued jail­house cloth­ing, Cor­co­ran ex­plained.

“Ini­tially, she’ll be held in a pro­tec­tive cus­tody,” Cor­co­ran said, adding af­ter a few days jail­house staff will in­ter­view Kane and re­view her clas­si­fi­ca­tion. “If she re­quests spe­cial pro­tec­tion, they will grant it to her as a for­mer law en­force­ment of­fi­cial.”

If an in­mate is granted spe­cial pro­tec­tion, they are held in an area with as few fel­low in­mates as pos­si­ble and guards closely mon­i­tor their move­ments to make sure there is no threat, Cor­co­ran ex­plained.

Ac­cord­ing to Cor­co­ran, the typ­i­cal daily sched­ule for an in­mate in­cludes lunch be­fore noon, din­ner at 4:30 p.m. and lights out at 10 p.m.

Visitors are per­mit­ted twice a week, two hours at a time. The vis­i­ta­tions are “no-con­tact vis­its,” a pol­icy en­acted be­cause of the on­go­ing opioid cri­sis, Cor­co­ran said.

At the jail, tele­vi­sion view­ing is avail­able only in the day rooms and the TV’s have only broad­cast chan­nels.

Dis­trict At­tor­ney Kevin R. Steele said Kane’s in­car­cer­a­tion sends a mes­sage that “no one is above the law” and “closes this un­for­tu­nate chap­ter for the peo­ple of Pennsylvania.”

“As the jail door shuts her in, a strong mes­sage is be­ing sent that no one is above the law. No one. Not even the chief law en­force­ment of­fi­cer of the Com­mon­wealth,” Steele said in a pre­pared state­ment, just hours af­ter Kane sur­ren­dered to au­thor­i­ties.

Steele said Kane, a for­mer Lack­awanna County pros­e­cu­tor who was elected at­tor­ney gen­eral in 2012, not only abused her power to serve a per­sonal vendetta, she com­mit­ted crim­i­nal acts by dis­clos­ing se­cret grand jury and in­ves­tiga­tive in­for­ma­tion and then gave false tes­ti­mony un­der oath to try and cover up what she had done.

“The harm caused by the de­fen­dant’s ac­tions af­fected a vic­tim and his loved ones, a proud of­fice of men and women in law en­force­ment, and the cit­i­zens of our state. We be­lieve that to­day, jus­tice has fi­nally been served on be­half of the peo­ple of Pennsylvania,” Steele said.

On Tues­day, Steele asked a judge to re­voke Kane’s bail and to or­der her to jail af­ter she ex­hausted her state ap­peals. Af­ter her con­vic­tion in 2016, Kane was per­mit­ted to re­main free on bail pend­ing the out­come of her state ap­peals.

In May, the Pennsylvania Su­pe­rior Court up­held Kane’s con­vic­tion and sen­tence. On Mon­day, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court de­cided not to hear Kane’s most re­cent ap­peal, set­ting the stage for her to be­gin serv­ing her sen­tence.

Judge Wendy Dem­chick-Al­loy, on Tues­day, or­dered Kane to sur­ren­der to jail of­fi­cials no later than 9 a.m. Thurs­day. On Wed­nes­day, Kane filed a last-minute re­quest to delay her re­port date, claim­ing she needed time to make ar­range­ments for her two chil­dren be­fore she be­gan serv­ing her stint be­hind bars.

How­ever, Dem­chick-Al­loy de­nied Kane’s re­quest and Kane en­tered the jail in Lower Prov­i­dence shortly be­fore 8 a.m. on Thurs­day.

On Aug. 15, 2016, Kane, the first Demo­crat and the first woman ever elected at­tor­ney gen­eral, was con­victed of charges of per­jury, ob­struct­ing ad­min­is­tra­tion of law, of­fi­cial op­pres­sion, false swear­ing and con­spir­acy. The jury de­ter­mined Kane or­ches­trated the il­le­gal dis­clo­sure of se­cret grand jury in­for­ma­tion to the me­dia and then en­gaged in acts de­signed to con­ceal and cover up her con­duct.

Steele and co-pros­e­cu­tor Michelle Henry ar­gued Kane did so to ex­act “re­venge” on a for­mer state pros­e­cu­tor with whom she was feud­ing.

At trial, pros­e­cu­tors ar­gued Kane’s quest for re­venge took root on March 16, 2014, when she read a Philadel­phia In­quirer ar­ti­cle that was “crit­i­cal” of her for fail­ing to pur­sue crim­i­nal charges against some Philadel­phia politi­cians and for shut­ting down a sting op­er­a­tion which was led by a for­mer state pros­e­cu­tor, Frank Fina.

Dur­ing the trial, wit­nesses tes­ti­fied Kane be­lieved Fina was re­spon­si­ble for the neg­a­tive pub­lic­ity.

To re­tal­i­ate against Fina, Steele and Henry al­leged, Kane or­ches­trated the re­lease to a reporter of a memo, emails and the tran­script of an in­ter­view per­tain­ing to the 2009 In­ves­ti­gat­ing Grand Jury No. 29, an in­ves­ti­ga­tion that cen­tered on a Philadel­phia civil rights of­fi­cial, which Fina su­per­vised and then didn’t pur­sue charges. Pros­e­cu­tors ar­gued the civil rights of­fi­cial, who was never charged with any crime, was harmed by the re­lease of the grand jury in­for­ma­tion.

Kane also was con­victed of ly­ing to the 35th statewide grand jury in Novem­ber 2014 to cover up her leaks by ly­ing un­der oath when she claimed she never agreed to main­tain her se­crecy re­gard­ing the 2009 grand jury in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

Pros­e­cu­tors said they dis­cov­ered ev­i­dence that Kane signed a so-called “se­crecy oath” on her sec­ond day in of­fice on Jan. 17, 2013, promis­ing her se­crecy for statewide in­ves­ti­gat­ing grand ju­ries one through 32. The oath com­pelled Kane to main­tain the se­crecy of all mat­ters oc­cur­ring be­fore past and present statewide grand ju­ries, pros­e­cu­tors al­leged.

Kane did not tes­tify at her trial.

In her ap­peals, Kane cited nine al­le­ga­tions of trial er­ror, in­clud­ing the de­nial of her pre­trial mo­tion to re­cuse all county judges from hear­ing her trial based on her con­tention that Judges Wil­liam R. Car­pen­ter, Carolyn T. Car­luc­cio and Risa Vetri Fer­man had close ties to the in­ves­ti­ga­tion sur­round­ing her.

Kane’s un­suc­cess­ful ap­peals also chal­lenged the de­nial of her pre­trial re­quest to dis­miss the case due to “se­lec­tive and vin­dic­tive pros­e­cu­tion.”

Through­out the in­ves­ti­ga­tion, Kane claimed she did noth­ing wrong and im­plied the charges were part of an ef­fort to force her out of of­fice be­cause she dis­cov­ered porno­graphic emails be­ing ex­changed be­tween state em­ploy­ees on state email ad­dresses.

PHOTO COUR­TESY MONTGOMERY COUNTY COR­REC­TIONAL FA­CIL­ITY

Book­ing photo of for­mer Pennsylvania At­tor­ney Gen­eral Kath­leen Grana­han Kane as she en­tered the Montgomery County Cor­rec­tional Fa­cil­ity on Nov. 29, 2018, to serve her 10-23 month sen­tence for 2016 per­jury con­vic­tion.

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