Thursday, September 17, 2009

NASGA Member Attends Hearings

Formerly of Luzerne County, NASGA Member Mary Connors attended Tuesday’s arraignment for ex-judges Michael Conahan and Mark Ciavarella.

Judge Michael Conahan was the presiding judge in the guardianship of Mary's mother, Grace Connors.

Grace died from starvation and dehydration in 2006, after five years incarcerated in a nursing facility against her will. She was virtually isolated from her family and friends. Mary was rarely permitted to visit her. Those sparse visits were always under guard - until the end when the guardian lifted the supervision to allow Mary to see her mother die.

Grace Connors - California/Pennyslvania Victim

In Memoriam: Grace Connors - July 17, 1921 – October 13, 2006

Ex-Jurists Plea, Still Free

Former judges Michael Conahan and Mark Ciavarella will remain free pending trial on corruption charges despite concerns raised by federal prosecutors that the men are a flight risk and are depleting assets that could be seized if they’re convicted, a federal magistrate judge ruled Tuesday.

The former judges appeared before U.S. District Magistrate Judge Thomas Blewitt and entered pleas of not guilty to a 48-count indictment issued against them last week.

Assistant U.S. Attorney William Houser requested that Conahan and Ciavarella’s bail be increased to $500,000, arguing the chance the men would flee had increased given they face significantly more time in prison than was negotiated in plea agreements that were rejected by the court.

The plea agreements, which have been withdrawn, called for the judges to serve 87 months in prison. The charges in the indictment – racketeering, bribery, extortion, money laundering, mail fraud and tax evasion – carry a combined total maximum sentence of 689 years in prison.

Full Article and Source:
Ex-Jurists Plea, Still Free

See also:
Ciavarella Plea
Ciavarella Bond
Ciavarella Release
Conahan Plea
Conahan Bond
Conahan Release


Anonymous said...

Given the nature and scale of the crimes these Honorable men are accused of committing, they should be immediately incarcerated and all assets frozen- which is what happens to other serious criminals who are considered potential risks of fleeing. The freezing of assets occurs in guardianship cases immediately- so why not here?
I'm glad Mary spoke up about her family's case- which is undoubtedly another wrong committed by these fine men we put trust in- Mary has shed light on the results of their perverse sense of justice.

Sue said...

I truly believe Grace Connors is smiling now, she is very proud to see that her daughter Mary has not forgotten how their family was ripped apart, how she was forced to exist, isolated and afraid, and how she died as a ward of the state.

Our family member was under the control of a guardian while dying a horrible, painful death from over medication, starvation and dehydration while in a stripped down room on the Medicare floor of nursing facility, weighing only 87 pounds at the time of death.

Although it has been many years, the anger and the loss of our loved one grows stronger.

I cannot imagine how Mary was able to maintain and control her emotions, just seeing the defendant former Judge Michael Conahan would have sent me over the edge.

It takes an enormous amount of consideration and courage to release information about the victims of guardianship abuse but it is the only way to expose the truth to hopefully bring change and save others.

You are very brave Mary Connors for continueing to be your dear mothers voice.

God bless you! and please don't ever give up the fight.

Unknown said...

After attending the arraignment of these uncommonly caught alleged criminals, who've already pled guilty & then withdrew plea; I was very disappointed to say the least. Just when there is a faint hope for some justice, it was laid to rest, as I watched them leave the courthouse without a monitoring device and no changes in bail or anything related. It makes a clear statement, even when so called judges make rulings for profit; deny due process to everyone except their buddies; they are a privileged class of crooks if they are caught. Who else but their atty. brethren would concur with such insanity. As long as Americans tolerate, the atty. created "judicial immunity", privileged class(false aristocracy) status & judicial discretion in the courtroom; we will watch our legislators, et al., destroy all rule of law and hence a once decent society.

Anonymous said...

I think these two corrupt crooks are being treated like they swiped cookies from 7-11. Makes me very angry just seeing these perps walk away to enjoy comforts of life while their lawyers drag this out for how long????

Betty said...

Former judge Michael Conahan jailed vulnerable teens for profit -- did he do the same to Grace Connors?

Is the PA AG investigating?

Anonymous said...

I am proud of Mary Connors for her strength and determination.

What she endured while her beloved mother was tortured to death is more than most people could survive.

She is a credit to all guardianship victims.

Anonymous said...

I believe Grace Connors is smiling at her daughter too!

Anonymous said...

Good for you, Mary Connors! Good for you.

No matter what punishment Michael Conahan gets for his wrongdoing, it won't be enough.

He had your Mom's life in his hands and he let her die.

I agree with Betty, all eyes should be on every guardianship case Conahan handled as well.

Anonymous said...

Mary's Mom is watching her from above -- and at the same time, the devil is looking up from below and waiting on Conahan.

May he rot in.....

Anonymous said...

The picture of Grace Connors tugs at my heart.

I am so sorry, Mary, for what you suffered and for what your dear Mom suffered.

I am just so sorry.

StandUp said...

Mary, you're a true warrior!

Anonymous said...

You go, Mary!

Anonymous said...

Mary, thanks for being an inspiration for all of us.

You are tough and you'll never give up until the thugs are held accountable.

Anonymous said...

It's nice of the court to give these two judges time to hide their assets. Maybe the judges' buddies in the mafia will spare taxpayers the expense of a trial.

Good job, Mary.

Lori View said...

The legislators are responsible for corruption in the courts!