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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Judicial Stalking Charges Against Democratic Activist Dismissed

As a kid, I'd often hear my dad on the phone at home, talking to clients. Criminal defendants rarely call a lawyer at home. They already know they're guilty. But people undergoing a divorce or having disputes with neighbors will call day and night.

"You've got only two choices when you have a bad neighbor - move or shoot him."

That was my dad's standard answer. It's a pretty good one, too.

Jon Soden, of the Lehigh/Northampton Progressive Alliance, and Emil Giordano, a Northmapton County judge, are neighbors who just don't like each other. Yeah, I know Judge Goirdano has a big R on his T-shirts and Soden sleeps with an Obama doll. But politics has nothing to do with this. These are two basically good guys who just hate each other.

It happens to me all the time.

Soden was arrested for stalking Judge Giordano a few months ago. Before that occurred, Soden was visited and threatened by overreaching deputy sheriffs so often that I really have to wonder who was stalking whom.

The DA must be wondering too. Charges were dismissed today. No hearing. Poof!

My dad was right. Instead of flipping birds at each other, these guys should flip a coin. Loser moves. If they can't do that, they can fight a duel. Since they're both triatheletes, I'm giving no odds.


A.J.C. said...

They could duke it out at the MCall forums...

Anonymous said...

Burne, weren't you a Judge ?

Bernie O'Hare said...

No, but I'm still a bastard.

Anonymous said...


That is a great picture for this posting. I wonder if that is real? Can you image waking up one day, seeing that thing fashioned in your neighbor's yard, and put in a certain spot that you are sure to notice on a constant basis? That is the ultimate game-breaking points! That's killer.

~~Alex Joseph
Washington, D.C.

Anonymous said...

Why are we always putting our noses in other peoples business??

Anonymous said...

What is an overreaching deputy? Is that a deputy that is doing his or her job?

Bernie O'Hare said...

This is very much the public's business. It involves crimninal charges that balance a judge's need for personal security against an individual's right to voice displeasure at another person. In this case, I believe it boils down to a disopute between two good people who simply don't like each other. But it has far-reaching consequences, and is something I make no apology for covering.

Bernie O'Hare said...

What is an overreaching deputy? Is that a deputy that is doing his or her job?

An overreaching deputy is one who brings charges that are dismissed by the DA without even a hearing.

An overreaching deputy is one who uses unions to deprive people of their jobs instread of protecting them.

An overreaching deputy is someone who thinks he has a God-given right to drive his county car home at the end of every day, and who lashes out at the county exec who takes his toy away.

An overreaching deputy is someone who tells the public to pay no attention to publicly filed criminal charges.

It's pretty clear, especially from your suggestion that we pay no attention, that you think regular people have no rights and that you are lords and masters who can step all over others.

In your desire to protect a judge, you have no right to intimidate or threaten others, and have no right to tell people what they may or may not read.

Anonymous said...

you seem not to like the sheriffs dept. but you need to get your facts straight and stop feeding everyone twisted info. the deputies didnt file the charges from what i know.

Bernie O'Hare said...

What do you know? Are you one of those deputies? Just admit it.

The charges were filed by the Commonwealth of Pa. and the investigation included deputy sheriffs, who most certainly were over-reaching. I don't care how well-qualified you are at the firing range. When you intimidate other people, you act more like bullies than law enforcement. There are many good deputies working for NC and I consider it the finest department in the county, but there are a few who are attempting to set up their own personal fiefdom. You've perverted the very reason for unions by using it to rid yourselves of two of your finer officers. You did bully a Dem activist, doing no favors for Judge Giordano in the process. You are acting like babies bc you can't take your cruisers home every night. My hope is that you don't poison the entire department.

Anonymous said...

To you Deputies. To bad its not five years ago then Bernie would say you are heroes fighting back aginst an evil County Executive, forced to unionize. But it is five years later and since Stoffa is the exec, that makes you bad guys not towing the Stoffa line.
It not about the facts its about Bernies ego.

Bernie O'Hare said...

I have always opposed the abuse of deputies who drive their cruisers home. I have always opposed deputies who exceeed their authority. You are claiming that five years ago, I would be calling these guys heroes. Actually, five years ago, I was doing the same thing I am doing now. In fact, I was more critical of the office at that time and many of the needless excess poured into it. My ass was in a sling with most deputies over my public comments. I'm not interested in being popular or political expedience, but am interested in what is right. What was right then is still right now.

Anonymous said...

stopped twisting again...its what you think is "right"