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Former Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Asks for Stay of Sentencing
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Summary: A former Pennsylvania Supreme Court justice has had her sentencing stayed for the time being, but she still remains a convicted felon. 

The sentence of former Pennsylvania state Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin has been placed on hold for the third time in 18 months, according to The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.


A stay of the sentencing was issued by the justice’s former colleagues on the state supreme court. The stay is pending a decision on whether or not the court will hear the appeal.

Melvin was found guilty of six criminal counts and was sentenced back in May of 2013 to serve three years of house arrest. She was also sentenced to pay a fine of $55,000, write letters of apology to each judge in the state and volunteer at a soup kitchen.

Melvin was convicted of using judicial and legislative staffers who worked for her sister, former Pennsylvania State Senator Jane Orie, during campaigns to reach the Supreme Court.

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Melvin asked the state’s highest court to hear her appeal last month. She also asked that the letter of apology be stayed until the case’s outcome.

The Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office objected to these requests, arguing that Melvin cannot pick the portions of her sentence that she wants to complete.

In an order from the court, it was agreed that Melvin could not pick her sentences.

“While we agree petitioner is entitled to the requested stay, she provides no support for her contention that she is entitled to a stay of a selected part of her interdependent sentence, and rather, we agree with the commonwealth that any stay must extend to the entire sentence.”

The convicted felon status for Melvin will not change with the stay, but it means she will not be subject to restrictions she would have been placed under during home monitoring.

Image credit: WTAE



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