Local Matters

Community Sponsors

December 21, 2010 - 12:31pm

Charvella case moved to Town of Batavia Court

posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, politics, Le Roy, Chris Charvella, Jay Grasso.

Because of a conflict of interest with the judges in Le Roy, where the case originated, Judge Robert C. Noonan this morning assigned the case of Chris Charvella to Town of Batavia Court.

Charvella is charged with harassment, 2nd, for allegedly placing a phone call to the home of Legislator Jay Grasso.

It will be up to the court in Batavia to set a time for Charvella's next appearance, and whether that appearance will be in front of Justice Tom Williams or Justice Mike Cleveland.

After the hearing this morning, Charvella said he couldn't comment on the case, but added, "When all is said and done, I'm confident I'll be completely vindicated."

Assistant District Attorney Kevin Fennell said there's been no discussion in the DA's office about whether or not to proceed with the case, but indicated that Charvella was arrested so he would be prosecuted.

He said he doesn't see this as a First Amendment issue.

"It's not the political aspect of the case that's been at issue," Finnell said. "It's the phone call to his home for no apparent legitimate purpose."

New York's harassment law bars phone calls for "no purpose of legitimate communication."

At the time of the call, according to Charvella's blog entries, Charvella believed Grasso was responsible for placing a Mike Ranzenhofer campaign sign on Charvella's front lawn. Charvella said he called Grasso's house to thank him for reading his blog, where he had previously written about a Ranzenhofer signs showing up in front of the family business, where he works.

Charvella, a frequent contributor to The Batavian, is active in local Democratic politics and ran in 2009 for county legislator against Grasso's colleague Hollis Upson, losing to the GOP incumbent.

Besides sitting on the legislature, Grasso is a part-time aide to Ranzenhofer, now in his second term representing Genesee County in the state Senate.

Thomas Schneider
Thomas Schneider's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 7 months ago
Joined: Aug 12 2009 - 9:56pm
Maybe Chris was just calling Jay to ask if he wanted his sign back? I think we could find some better things to waste tax dollars on in this county. Calling to ask if someone reads your blog sounds like legitimate communication to me.
Beth Kinsley
Beth Kinsley's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 1 week ago
Joined: Aug 22 2008 - 9:43pm
Agreed Thomas - especially when we are talking about an elected representative who has his phone number listed on the county website.
Bob Harker
Bob Harker's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 9 months ago
Joined: Aug 20 2009 - 3:12pm
This is ridiculous. It has, and will continue to be, a reprehensible waste of tax dollars. If anything (and I'm not advocating this) it should be a civil matter if Grasso feels he was harmed in any way. I don't condone the defendant's behavior, but I most certainly question the maturity and decision making ability of a sitting legislator that pursues this. Given Grasso's lack of these desired trait for a local politician, he might be better suited to serve in the quagmire of non-productivity we call Albany... Oh wait! In a matter of speaking, he already does!
Michele Case
Michele Case's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: Apr 16 2010 - 12:11am
Chris: Been there. I wrote on this on a different thread. The former Byron Bergen Elementary school principal signed a police statement in late July 2010 indicating I was not home to receive my 9 y.o. son from school. I am a working single mom so I am never home, however usually he gets off the bus and his 15 y.o. brother is home. This particular day June 10, 2010 the older son was detained for a field trip. My younger son was not dropped off, instead brought back to the school and eventually was picked up by his grandmother. The former principal said she could not reach me by phone, and indicated she called my home phone and my cell phone. I was at work. I gave the work number to the school in person 2 years before when I started this job because I had previously worked for the county. The school claimed they did not have it. I was arrested on August 1, 2010. I spoke with the school administrator and showed him a school document with my work phone number on it. It was a copy that was written on BY THE SCHOOL before they returned the copy so it was proof the school knew my work number. It doesn't get any better than that. The administrator acknowledged that obviously the school did know how to contact me and apologized. Then there is Genesee County Law... Kevin Finnell and the DA office do not drop ANYTHING. Vindication is not something you will see. I ended up with an ACD (stay out of trouble for 6 months and it will be dismissed) and was ordered to do 35 hours of community service so I could be away from my kids even more. I can't even get deadbeat dad to work, least not on the books anyway. I also am out $1000 for the lawyer who made an appearance. I still scratch my head as to what I did wrong? When my older boy is in sports my youngest gets dropped off at the neighbors who babysits. It is all on the school record. If he had been dropped off he would have just gone there to play if his brother weren't home. Good luck Chris but don't expect any better! Of course you can always take your chances on a Jury but I was told they will pull out all the punches to make you look bad and whether there is any truth to what they say or bring up,...just know ethics are not an issue in law.
George Richardson
George Richardson's picture
Offline
Last seen: 8 years 6 months ago
Joined: Dec 10 2008 - 9:33am
Asking Judge Noonan to settle this is like asking Dad what to do. Judge N: "Both of you boys need to sit in time out for 20 minutes and say three hail mary's. If I see you again within a year you'll do seven to ten in State Prison. Now, get out of here before I change my mind." Chris: "Yes, Sir" Jay: "Yes, Sir, Sir" Judge N: " Don't y'all come back now, ya' hear?
George Richardson
George Richardson's picture
Offline
Last seen: 8 years 6 months ago
Joined: Dec 10 2008 - 9:33am
Oh, so it won't be Judge Noonan after all. I really should read the articles before commenting on them but I'm from Batavia too.
Lorie Longhany
Lorie Longhany's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 11 months ago
Joined: May 2 2008 - 10:33pm
Now moving into the third court to hear this ridiculous charge. When there is so much talk of fiscal prudence, people in Batavia being evicted from their home and so many are out of work -- this is just an outlandish waste of tax payer money. An appalling waste.
Michele Case
Michele Case's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: Apr 16 2010 - 12:11am
Mr Charvella: I know your lawyer told you not to talk about your case, but can you let me know if you read my prior post? From above: "Assistant District Attorney Kevin Fennell said there's been no discussion in the DA's office about whether or not to proceed with the case, but indicated that Charvella was arrested so he would be prosecuted."** **Does that sound like he wants to hear your side or that you are already guilty cuz you have been charged?! There is no such thing as vindication. If you go to trial it will be with a Jury who do not know you or your sarcasm/wit. You will be bad mouthed by the ADA as a smart a-- who was lookin for trouble etc, etc. and probably worse. It may not be right, but this is how it works for anyone out there that doesn't know. I'm on your side, I feel bad for ya, but I know the system. Good luck with your decision.
C D
C D's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 years 4 months ago
Joined: Oct 9 2008 - 10:40pm
Observation: Keeping in mind this article, what Michele shared, and similar situations other Genesee County citizens have experienced with the local law enforcement/DA's office, how many people will want to continue living in or want to settle down in Batavia or Genesee County? Food for thought.
Lorie Longhany
Lorie Longhany's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 11 months ago
Joined: May 2 2008 - 10:33pm
I was just reminded by a friend, who also happened to be an opponent of Grasso's a few years back,of several calls that Grasso himself made to my friends home during their campaign. Wonder what the statute of limitation is on making an alleged "harassing" phone call and if those annoying calls placed three years ago (one which interrupted dinner and annoyed my friend's wife) also rise to the level of the charge against Chris. Hmmmmm. Oh what a slippery slope we are venturing down.
bud prevost
bud prevost's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 days 16 hours ago
Joined: Jan 11 2009 - 9:12pm
Lorie- If I am correct in my guess on your friend, he wouldn't stoop to that level. Too good of a guy. Nowhere near the immaturity level of these 2 litigants.
Peter Koch
Peter Koch's picture
Offline
Last seen: 9 years 4 months ago
Joined: Nov 17 2010 - 10:50am
Jay Grasso is killing his career in politics. These antics are exactly what turns off voters.

Post new comment

Log in or register to post comments

Calendar

S M T W T F S
 
 
 
 
 
1
 
2
 
3
 
4
 
5
 
6
 
7
 
8
 
9
 
10
 
11
 
12
 
13
 
14
 
15
 
16
 
17
 
18
 
19
 
20
 
21
 
22
 
23
 
24
 
25
 
26
 
27
 
28
 
29
 
30
 
31
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Copyright © 2008-2019 The Batavian. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
 

blue button