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#1393902 - 03/26/13 10:25 AM Who will run for Yates County District Attorney?
Samuel Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 02/07/08
Posts: 4492
Loc: Potter, NY
I'll leave my opinion out for a bit. Very interested in who Yates County would like to see in the district attorney's office in the future.

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#1394057 - 03/26/13 09:15 PM Re: Who will run for Yates County District Attorney? [Re: Samuel]
py.eternal.cynic Offline
Member

Registered: 12/05/12
Posts: 131
Loc: inside looking out
Good luck. Some things got to give here though. Change in local state and federal government is needed before this great country sinks into the abyss.

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#1394468 - 03/28/13 05:48 PM Re: Who will run for Yates County District Attorney? [Re: py.eternal.cynic]
nomi Offline
Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 361
Loc: new york usa
I would like to see some one with integrity and morals run. Someone who doesn't go along with the good ole boys in the police agencys . Someone who doesn't do things as a favor to cops.

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#1394470 - 03/28/13 05:55 PM Re: Who will run for Yates County District Attorney? [Re: nomi]
py.eternal.cynic Offline
Member

Registered: 12/05/12
Posts: 131
Loc: inside looking out
Aren't the good ole boys really old and retired by now. Come on. Looking for a lawyer with ethics and character? Better off finding one that is skilled and knowledgeable willing to prosecute what should be prosecuted no matter who it is or isn't. The law is the law. Get over the grudges you have for I'll conceived wrong doings.

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#1394478 - 03/28/13 06:09 PM Re: Who will run for Yates County District Attorney? [Re: py.eternal.cynic]
nomi Offline
Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 361
Loc: new york usa
I was falsely arrested and falsely convicted . My conviction was overturned by the higher court and charge was dismissed.


Edited by nomi (03/28/13 06:10 PM)

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#1394919 - 03/31/13 11:30 PM Re: Who will run for Yates County District Attorney? [Re: nomi]
py.eternal.cynic Offline
Member

Registered: 12/05/12
Posts: 131
Loc: inside looking out
Tell us what you did so we can read about it and evaluate it on our own and form and opinion?

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#1395096 - 04/01/13 10:25 PM Re: Who will run for Yates County District Attorney? [Re: py.eternal.cynic]
Honestly Offline
Member

Registered: 06/24/12
Posts: 234
Loc: Penn Yan
Let's see what the the Appellate division does with respect to Wayne Davidson's appeal to Judge Bender's decision which will be argued in the court in the next 3 days.

Hopefully, justice will prevail.. That's right, take it out of the local jurisdidation and have a real decision without political decisions!


Edited by Honestly (04/01/13 10:40 PM)

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#1395431 - 04/03/13 01:39 PM full-time district attorney to stay [Re: Honestly]
newsman38 Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 03/21/01
Posts: 4179
Loc: Fourth Estate
County supports full-time district attorney

YATES COUNTY—The Yates County public safety committee decided they wished to retain a full-time district attorney (DA) during their meeting Monday, April 1.

The subject originated from discussions about potentially switching the District Attorney Jason Cook back to a part-time position during legislative budget meetings last fall as a means for cost savings.

County Administrator Sarah Purdy said she looked up what would be necessary to change the position back to part-time after discussion of the subject last month. She said this request is in no way a reflection of the performance of the district attorney and does not reflect the intention of the legislature as a whole. Purdy said while it would be possible to go back to part-time, she recommends it remains a full-time position.

Purdy said in order to revert the position back to part time, the legislature would have to repeal a local law passed in 2001 making it full-time and then pass another local law establishing a part-time district attorney. She said if the legislature did decide to pursue this idea, she recommends making it effective Jan. 1, 2014 to avoid a referendum period. Purdy also said the legislature would need to make it clear to anybody running for the position it would only be a part-time job.

“I think it is pretty obvious we need a full-time DA,” Legislator Tim Dennis said. He said the idea was looked at as a way to avoid an unfunded mandate from the state increasing the district attorney’s salary. Dennis also asked if the county did go back to a part-time district attorney, how many more assistant district attorneys would be necessary to do the job?

Committee Chair Donna Alexander agreed, saying it would “have a devastating effect on public safety.” Legislator Robert Multer said the move to a full-time job in 2001 was well justified, and while the idea is “good politics,” it would not be in the best interest of the county. No other legislator voiced an interest in continuing discussion in support of a part-time district attorney.

Copyright © 2013 FINGER LAKES MEDIA. All rights reserved.

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#1395446 - 04/03/13 02:29 PM Re: full-time district attorney to stay [Re: newsman38]
Mean Gene Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/10/09
Posts: 2331
Loc: Yates County
I applaud the legislators for making the proper decision regarding the full time position. I, along with others spearheaded the move to get the legislators to make the position full time when Susan Lindenmuth left and took a job in Rochester. She held the position when it was part time.

For years I used to get no feedback, nor returned phone calls from a part time D.A. who will remain nameless. One part time D.A. always made you feel like he wanted to get you off the phone so he could work at his law practice.

It was a bad situation having a full time Police department, Sheriff's department and contingent of State police funneling all their paperwork to a part time office.

I will beat the proverbial dead horse and ask the legislators to go back and look at all the new positions that have been created over the last 20 years and see if they can really justify all of them.

The school has axed and cut positions the last few years to keep the tax rate down. If they can do it the county can also look at retirements and not fill non critical positions.

I have called a few area Sheriff's departments here in Florida on non-emergency matters. They have very efficent automated call receiving. A nice greeting tells you to hang up and call 911 if its an emergency, then directs you to what extension you are looking for. Yates County needs to implement that, it would cut down on the majority of the calls the 911 center answers and easily transition them back to 2 per shift instead of three. The people at the 911 center in Yates do a great job, I see it as a means to reduce the tax burden by not filling positions when they are vacated by retirements or resignations. \:\)
_________________________
"Rational arguments based upon ample evidence will not change the minds of irrational people"

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#1395747 - 04/05/13 03:09 PM Re: full-time district attorney to stay [Re: Mean Gene]
Ogadai Offline
Member

Registered: 04/17/08
Posts: 101
Loc: LaLa Land
Gene,

In what way is this the proper position for the Legislature? Here are some facts (not opinion) that are relevant (based on YCSF and NYS data):

1) The crime, arrest and conviction rates have remained pretty much constant from 1984 'til today. In other words the introduction of a full-time DA had no significant effect on crime, arrest or conviction rates.
2) Crime rate and arrests have flat-lined since we went full-time DA, while costs have doubled.
3) We are now paying a huge (State mandated) salary to a DA who has only tried 2 cases in court since election, due to rise to $160,000 later this year. His last court appearance was in 2010 - the Controno case, hardly his finest hour (worth looking up the details)!
4) So we have a DA who now costs 3 times as much as his predecessor for doing 2 trials in almost 4 years.
5) There are 2 full-time Assistant DA's who actually do the work.

So the introduction of a full-time DA had no effect on crime but doubled costs. Why on earth not return to the old part-time DA? Do you like the present system of ever-increasing taxes?

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#1395748 - 04/05/13 03:17 PM Re: full-time district attorney to stay [Re: newsman38]
Ogadai Offline
Member

Registered: 04/17/08
Posts: 101
Loc: LaLa Land
When, oh when, will our Legislators base their opinions and decisions on facts, especially when spending other peoples money?

Taking data from YCSD and NYS, the move of the DA from part-time to full-time has had no effect on crime rates, arrests or convictions, but has doubled costs. Note the phrase "unfunded mandate" - which does not apply if we revert to a part-time DA!

I really want to hear a Legislator using facts to show that something they propose is cost-effective. I would also be sooo grateful if our County Administrator would back up her recommendations with facts to support the case rather than an opinion based on supporting the status quo.

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#1395769 - 04/05/13 06:19 PM Re: full-time district attorney to stay [Re: Mean Gene]
yatescovip Offline
Member

Registered: 10/03/09
Posts: 42
Loc: penn yan
I never was a big fan of Susan Lindenmuth while I respected her ON THE JOB presence. My impression is she and other PART TIME DAs put in significantly more time ON THE JOB and TRYING cases than our present "full time" DA does. I'm curious (and I would think the legislators and general public would be as well) to know how much MORE time the DA spends ON THE JOB than they did - AND how many MORE cases he personally has tried (vs his appointed assistants) in village, town & county courts than the PART TIMERS did to justify the FULL time position AND bucks?

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#1395770 - 04/05/13 06:23 PM Re: full-time district attorney to stay [Re: Ogadai]
Mean Gene Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/10/09
Posts: 2331
Loc: Yates County
Originally Posted By: Ogadai
Gene,

In what way is this the proper position for the Legislature? Here are some facts (not opinion) that are relevant (based on YCSF and NYS data):

1) The crime, arrest and conviction rates have remained pretty much constant from 1984 'til today. In other words the introduction of a full-time DA had no significant effect on crime, arrest or conviction rates.
2) Crime rate and arrests have flat-lined since we went full-time DA, while costs have doubled.
3) We are now paying a huge (State mandated) salary to a DA who has only tried 2 cases in court since election, due to rise to $160,000 later this year. His last court appearance was in 2010 - the Controno case, hardly his finest hour (worth looking up the details)!
4) So we have a DA who now costs 3 times as much as his predecessor for doing 2 trials in almost 4 years.
5) There are 2 full-time Assistant DA's who actually do the work.

So the introduction of a full-time DA had no effect on crime but doubled costs. Why on earth not return to the old part-time DA? Do you like the present system of ever-increasing taxes?




I agree, reported crime has not seen an increase in Yates County over the years. (Thats my perception from working it, I don't have stats.)
When Susan Lindenmuth took over as the first Full Time D.A. it was like a breath of fresh air. Phone calls were returned, Investigators conferenced with the D.A. on cases and I felt that all the work that we as investigators and officers did in putting together a case was not going to be dumped because the D.A. was busy running a private practice.
In the "old days" I made a felony arrest and literally had no conversations with a D.A. until a trial date was set. It was clear to me that just prior to trial the D.A. figured the defendant would take a plea offer to a lesser charge. It didn't work and he lost the trial because he was unprepared and he had no help in what was going on because I was sequestered as a witness. That was the norm.
Over the years our crime fighting techniques and abilities improved. As I said previously there is no way it made sense to have a part time D.A. receiving paperwork from all the full time officers in the county.

Most cases are pled out or plea barginned. Thats the system. The number of trials held is not a good benchmark to use. If a case is put together well enough when presented to the D.A. a defendant will usually plea out to the charged crime or a reduced crime.

I have heard rumors that the present ADA's are doing alot of the work. I don't know how the current D.A. could be costing "three times" Susan's salary. The mandated salary could not have gone up that much.

I made alot of felony arrests my last 20 years, the only two that went to trial, that I remember off hand were two cases where a potential long term sentence was at stake. The defendants rolled the dice and both lost. One is serving 80+ years and the other ended up with 15-life as a persistant felon.
I would not have wanted a part time D.A. to be prosecuting those cases. That office needs someone committed to doing the job without the distraction of trying to make ends meet by running a law practice on the side.

To answer your last question, No I don't like the present system of ever-increasing taxes, there are other personnel positions that could be eliminated thru retirement-attrition or cuts.
_________________________
"Rational arguments based upon ample evidence will not change the minds of irrational people"

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#1395771 - 04/05/13 06:26 PM Re: full-time district attorney to stay [Re: yatescovip]
Mean Gene Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/10/09
Posts: 2331
Loc: Yates County
Originally Posted By: yatescovip
I never was a big fan of Susan Lindenmuth while I respected her ON THE JOB presence. My impression is she and other PART TIME DAs put in significantly more time ON THE JOB and TRYING cases than our present "full time" DA does. I'm curious (and I would think the legislators and general public would be as well) to know how much MORE time the DA spends ON THE JOB than they did - AND how many MORE cases he personally has tried (vs his appointed assistants) in village, town & county courts than the PART TIMERS did to justify the FULL time position AND bucks?


You are correct regarding Susan's commitment to the job, I would often go by the courthouse and see her vehicle there well after hours. She used to tell me it was the best time for her to get work done without interruption.
_________________________
"Rational arguments based upon ample evidence will not change the minds of irrational people"

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#1395778 - 04/05/13 08:14 PM Re: full-time district attorney to stay [Re: Mean Gene]
Ogadai Offline
Member

Registered: 04/17/08
Posts: 101
Loc: LaLa Land
You are quite right on my item 4) - I got that wrong as I was going by JC as full-time DA. At the new (NYS mandated but unfunded) 2013 pay rate, he will receive almost 3x what Susan did when she was part-time - I think from my research he will be getting about $125,000 this year and rising for the next 2 years (without any local option) to around $150,000 - $165,000 by 2015.

Do you really believe the DA is more competent than the ADAs? Sufficiently more competent that it is worth this sort of salary - for what you describe (I know, this was just your personal experience, but it kind of indicates the workload involved for the DA) as 2 cases in 20 years (we are not talking even one serious case each month are we, possibly not even one each year?)?

The switch to full-time DA did not raise the conviction rate. Surely this is the bottom line even if you want to ignore the number of cases tried? Convictions steady, costs up sharply over the last few years!

I know you are one for cutting costs - but even in areas where you believe in the cause, I think we must look at the service delivery and see if the costs are truly justified, and if not they gotta go (as far as we can). Surely every part of the spending of tax money should be up for review, personal preferences aside?

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#1395783 - 04/05/13 09:18 PM Re: full-time district attorney to stay [Re: Ogadai]
Mean Gene Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/10/09
Posts: 2331
Loc: Yates County
I guess we will disagree on the "need" for a full time D.A. I have no knowledge of what kind of job the current D.A. is doing, I have been gone almost four years now. I know he has gone thru a few new ADA's since he took over and the ones he has hired were cutting their teeth in their positions.

The D.A. has alot of responsibilities besides trials. Has to supervise the two ADA's and make sure all the paperwork required of the office is taken care of. There is a political end of it also seeing how the D.A. has to run for office every few years. There are grants to apply for and victim's rights that have to be tended to. There is alot more there than meets the eye. I could make a better argument that we could get by without a Sheriff as he never arrests anyone, everyone under him does all the police work!!! \:\)
_________________________
"Rational arguments based upon ample evidence will not change the minds of irrational people"

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#1395785 - 04/05/13 09:43 PM Re: full-time district attorney to stay [Re: Mean Gene]
S.P. King 4th Offline
Member

Registered: 05/05/11
Posts: 383
Loc: PARTYING!
Mean Gene you said it was a breath of fresh air when their was a full time DA who tool the time the time to look at the case and give it the time it deserves instead of a part time with practice to worry about. Would you agree it would be a fair argument to say full time DA's in Yates "make" cases more than they should be instead of dismissing then to justify the "time" of a full time DA?

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#1395791 - 04/05/13 11:44 PM Re: full-time district attorney to stay [Re: S.P. King 4th]
Mean Gene Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/10/09
Posts: 2331
Loc: Yates County
No, I don't see it that way, if you don't present a good case to the DA then they won't run with it. The previous mention of the lack of trials doesn't take into account the number of grand jury presentations or prosecutors informations, evidentiary hearings etc that take place prior to a plea or trial.
There are some prosecutors who are more aggressive than others but I don't think a prosecutor would last long if the perception was that he was overly aggressive in pursuing some cases.
_________________________
"Rational arguments based upon ample evidence will not change the minds of irrational people"

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#1395869 - 04/06/13 08:53 PM Re: full-time district attorney to stay [Re: Mean Gene]
py.eternal.cynic Offline
Member

Registered: 12/05/12
Posts: 131
Loc: inside looking out
All the arguments you make about the da(supervision, grants, etc.) Can be said about the sheriff as well, or a chief or any head of department or agency.

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#1400756 - 05/08/13 07:45 PM Re: full-time district attorney to stay [Re: py.eternal.cynic]
Samuel Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 02/07/08
Posts: 4492
Loc: Potter, NY
Per the Chronicle Express Jason Cook will be running for re-election to a second term as DA. I sincerely hope someone else is running.

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