Thursday, December 19, 2013



UPDATE:  11:40 AM

Attorney Conley did file a Marcelli Motion to Strike earlier this morning.

The last few paragraphs of the motion provide readers with an excellent summary of the tone of the entire document, to wit:
In sum, if this Court does not strike Defendant’s pre-answer Motion to Dismiss, it should deny same for all and any of the reasons set forth hereinabove.

“Bottom line”, Usurper Maier is not, as he would have this Court believe, a hapless and blameless “victim” here, “immunized” by legitimate color of law and good faith.

Rather, the real victim here is the collective body of Stark Count taxpayers, who are out $129,301.75 and who, unlike Maier, are not already (before their 50th birthdays) retired and receiving a very generous “double-dipping” State pension and attendant lifetime of taxpayer-guaranteed financial independence and security.

One has to wonder whether or not it has dawned on Thomas Rosenberg of Roetzel & Andress and representing George T. Maier in his battle to be sheriff of Stark County that he is, perhaps, in for one his biggest challenges in his legal face-off against local attorney and civic activist Craig T. Conley.

Conley is representing Stark County taxpayer Thomas M. Marceilli in Marcell's question to recover for Stark County taxpayers the nearly $130,000 that Maier received/expended as, what Conley has coined in expression in recent pleadings, being the "usurper sheriff" for the period February 12, 2013 through November 6, 2013.

The February through November timeline is the period of time that Maier occupied 4500 Atlantic Boulevard as the illegal (according to the Ohio Supreme Court, Swanson v. Maier, quo warranto, filed February 12, 2013; decided November 6, 2013) occupant of the sheriff's digs.

Yesterday, Conley filed an "amended" complaint on behalf of Marcelli (the original having been filed November 27, 2013).

Here is the essence of the original filing:

Conley says he found it expedient to file an "amended" complaint for various reasons chief among which is the fact that he under covered new numbers that raised the original pleading from about $120,000 to nearly $130,000 as the amount his client wants to recover for Stark County taxpayers.

Maier's attorney (Rosenberg), who the SCPR thinks connected with Maier on the basis of a recommendation by Massillon Municipal Court judge Eddie Elum, Elum thought to have - in an overlapping time period context - worked with Rosenberg in the Ohio attorney general's office (1980s into the 1990s), "moved to dismiss" Conley's original complaint on December 10th.

To complete the connection, Elum is thought among a number of Stark County political observers, including the SCPR, to be politically close to George Maier's brother, Johnnie A. Maier, Jr.

A SCPR source has provided a copy of a Columbus Dispatch report published that shows a Elum/Johnnie A. Maier, Jr political connection going back to 1988, to wit:

Rosenberg may well now want to rethink whether or not the "motion to dismiss" was the best way to deal with the Marcelli complaint.

It is clear to the SCPR from looking at Conley's original complaint compared to the "amended" complaint that the original may have been deficient in certain regards and susceptible to telling legal attack some time during the proceedings.

It appears as if Rosenberg's "motion to dismiss" made it apparent to Conley that some "legal repair" was in order and that such was also a reason why the original complaint was amended.

With the filing of the "amended complaint" Rosenberg will have to rethink his response.

Will he renew his "motion to dismiss" or will he go in a different direction.

How he reacts to the "amended" complaint could be a tip-off on how the Marcelli (Conley) versus Maier (Rosenberg) battle is going to unwind, if it does in fact continue.

Conley (who considered Rosenberg's original "motion to dismiss" to be a personal attack on him) has made a legal pleading move (filed December 13th) to disqualify Rosenberg on the basis of Rosenberg having a "conflict-in-interest."

Key in Marcelli's (verified, in other words - sworn under oath - "amended" complaint (an argument that may not have been all that apparent in Conley's original pleading) is his alleging that in assuming the office of Stark County sheriff, George T. Maier, acted in "bad faith."

In "bad faith?"

In setting up the allegation of Maier assuming the office on February 12th as being "in bad faith," Marcelli recites to several key factors:
  • Stark County prosecutor John Ferrero's "sworn statement" (February 4, 2013) to the Stark County Democratic Central Committee (SCDP-CC), which met on February 5th to consider appointing a sheriff to replace November, 2012 sheriff-elect Mike McDonald (link to background as to why McDonald was being replaced).
    • The "sworn statement" by Ferrero asserted that George T. Maier did not meet statutory requirements to be qualified for appointment as sheriff and which document was filed with the Ohio Supreme Court in Swanson v. Maier (see cite above)
  • Ferrero and two assistant prosecutors (all SCDP-CC members) spoke of their belief that Maier was disqualified,
  • Maier was present at the meeting but notwithstanding the legal opinions accepted the SCDP-CC appointment.
  • The Ohio Supreme Court in its Swanson v. Maier decision made the statement:
    • "Despite concerns expressed by several members of the DCC meeting that Maier did not meet the qualifications for sheriff, the DCC appointed him."
  • Maier, "purportedly acting under the color of law had no authority to so act ... ."
As a consequence of Marcelli's amended filing, here is a comparison (in addition to the allegation that Maier acted in "bad faith" and not under the "color of law" in the sense of having reason to believe he had the legal authority to do so) of the outlining of the particular Maier receipts/expenditures that Marcell seeks to recover for Stark County taxpayers.  (Note:  one additional item has been added from the original November 27th pleading)

Conley tells that the SCPR that first thing this morning he will be filing a motion to strike Rosenberg's motion to dismiss on the basis that the motion to dismiss is no longer applicable in view of Marcelli's having filed his "amended" - verified - complaint yesterday.

So there you have it folks.

The ongoing battle between Conley and Rosenberg on behalf of their respective clients.

Yesterday, Stark County Prosecutor John Ferrero met with the county commissioners in "executive session" to discuss Tim Swanson's letter of December 12th (received by the prosecutor on the 13th) whereby Swanson re-asserted his February 7th request that Ferrero make a determination of whether or not George T. Maier holds office lawfully and to act according to his finding.

So, in addition to the Marcelli civil action, there is still plenty going on in the back and forth between the Swanson and Maier factors.

The SCPR expects a final determination by Swanson - no later than tomorrow - as to whether or not to pursue a new quo warranto.

Stay tuned!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think Mr.Marcelii and attorney Conley, should go after the Stark County Democratic Party instead of Maier. Reason, Maier did not appointment himself to the job, they did. They are the ones resposible for all this mess. Why are they getting off the hook?