Local Matters

Community Sponsors

February 28, 2011 - 6:11pm

Chris Charvella granted permission to start attending county legislature meetings again

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

Chris Charvella can start attending Genesee County Legislature meetings again.

Town of Batavia Justice Mike Cleveland today adjusted the order of protection barring him from showing up at the place of business of Legislator Jay Grasso.

Grasso has accused Charvella of harassing him for leaving a message on his home phone that said, "Thanks for reading my blog."

Charvella is charged with harassment, 2nd. Under the statute, he is accused of making a phone call with no legitimate purpose.

Along with attorney E. Robert Fussell, Charvella, a Democratic committee member, appeared in Town of Batavia Court today for a status hearing.

Fussell indicated he is preparing motions to challenge the constitutionality of the charge, but the only request today was to change the order of protection issued in Town of Le Roy Court when Charvella was first arrested. The order prohibits Charvella from having any contact with Grasso.

"It's certainly has been my practice to attend meetings of the legislature," said Charvella, who ran for a seat on the county board in 2009. "That's a practice I would like to continue."

Assistant District Attorney Melissa Cianfrini object to the change in the order, saying that Charvella was offered a plea deal that would have altered the court order and given Charvella a conditional discharge of the case.* Since Charvella turned down that offer and the case may go to trial, Cianfrini said, Charvella should be kept away in all circumstances from Grasso, since Grasso is both the alleged vicitm and a potential witness in any trial.

(UPDATE: Cianfrini called to clarify: Charvella was offered an adjournament in contemplation of dismissal, meaning the case would be dismissed with no record (all court records would be sealed) if Charvella stayed out of trouble for six months).

Grasso, a Republican, is Le Roy's elected representative on the legislature.

Outside of court, Fussell wouldn't confirm that he and his client intend to take the case to trial. He would only say, "I'm preparing motions." He said the motions would be based on constitutional issues.

During the hearing today, Fussell gave some indication of what those arguments will be, telling Cleveland, "If a politician doesn't like what a constituent has to say, it would be very, very chilling (to block meeting attendance). He (Charvella) should be allowed to attend these things."

Those motions must be filed by April 15 and Charvella's next court appearance was set for 4:30 p.m., May 23.

For previous coverage of the Chris Charvella and Jay Grasso case, click here.

Alan Bedenko
Alan Bedenko's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 9 months ago
Joined: Jul 27 2008 - 8:10pm
What's happening here is a ridiculous travesty and a waste of taxpayer time and effort - something a Republican like Grasso should theoretically be mindful of. Since everyone's getting bogged down in minute and picayune criminal matters, the entire story reveals that Grasso trespassed onto Charvella's property and littered by leaving an unwanted piece of trash (i.e., a Ranzenhofer for Senate lawn sign) on said property. Furthermore, Grasso engaged in harassment in the 2nd degree by leaving a note for Charvella that read, "Courtesy of Sharome Glasshole", referencing a pseudonym that Charvella invented for Grasso on his blog. When Charvella allegedly placed the phone call for which he is now accused, Mr. Grasso decided that what was good for the goose was just too much for the gander to tolerate and cried to the police about it. The problem for Grasso is that there are civil remedies available to Charvella when he is ultimately acquitted of these charges - civil remedies that may be more difficult to pursue were he to accept a laughable alternative disposition which would require Charvella to admit to sufficient facts to support the underlying criminal charge. Hopefully, Charvella will bring a civil lawsuit alleging violation of, among other things, abuse of process and malicious prosecution. I'll get my popcorn ready.
Daniel Jones
Daniel Jones's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 week 3 days ago
Joined: May 2 2008 - 9:36am
LeeAnna M. Kiefer, 18, of Transit Road, East Bethany, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Kiefer is accused of being involved in an incident on Big Tree Road in Pavilion where she allegedly punched another person in the head and face. http://thebatavian.com/howard-owens/police-beat-harassment-charge-filed/...
Howard B. Owens
Howard B. Owens's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 hours 4 min ago
Joined: Apr 23 2008 - 3:05pm
Alan, see the update to the story. I misunderstood what Cianfrini said in court yesterday. Chris was offered, essentially, a dismissal -- no admission.
Chris Charvella
Chris Charvella's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 years 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 15 2009 - 4:25pm
I was offered a 6-month ACD, Howard. Not the same thing as a dismissal. I'd say your iniitial description was accurate, but Alan's a lawyer, he can clarify better than I.
John Roach
John Roach's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 week 3 days ago
Joined: May 29 2008 - 5:22am
Alan, Just for the record, while Chris thinks it was Grasso, there is no real proof who trespassed on his property. Since this incident took place, as new evidence been found that Grasso did it? I still think it was somebody else. As for you saying the phone call was "alleged", even Chris has said a call was made, that's where the free speech issue comes from, right? On the other hand, Grasso should never let this go this far. And you're right, this is a waste of time and money.
Bea McManis
Bea McManis's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: May 4 2009 - 9:20pm
I read the definition of the ACD and I'm glad you didn't take it, Chris. "In United States criminal law, adjournment in contemplation of dismissal (ACD or ACOD) may be offered to a defendant in the interest of justice with a view toward ultimate dismissal of the charge (see e.g. New York Criminal Procedure Law, Section 170.55)." Sounds good so far. "The judge usually adjourns the case for a period of six months (sometimes a year) after which time the case will be dismissed as long as the defendant has stayed out of trouble (i.e., has not gotten arrested again). It is not a form of probation, nor a conviction." It may not be probation, nor a conviction, but it certainly places the burden on the defendant, who has never once indicated guilt of making a phone call for no legitimate purpose. What is to stop Mr. Grasso from finding another "less than legitimate purpose" to have Chris arrested again and this circus starting again? "The burden of proof in the court systems which employ the system of ACD rests with the people (that is, the prosecution). If evidence demonstrating guilt is not presented, the matter is deemed dismissed, and the ACD proceeds along its standard course of action." It would seem that Ms. Cianfrini doesn't have the burden of proof needed to get a conviction. Ergo, the ACD. But, why would Chris take it? Doesn't he deserve to have all charges expunged without the six months or a year window? This has dragged on far longer than needed. Frankly, I think that Mr. Grasso and Ms. Cianfrini were banking on Chris' folding due to time constraints and the legal fees. "In New York State, a case subject to an ACD is normally dismissed on the date of adjournment, and restored on the first anniversary of the dismissal, upon which the matter is sealed automatically, except on objection from the prosecution." Since there was no need for this case, waiting for the first anniversary of the dismissal to have the records sealed (but not necessarily sealed by local law enforcement)is hardly an attractive offer. Going to trial may be expensive, but well worth it. I agree with Al. A civil suit should follow. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adjourned_in_Contemplation_of_Dismissal
Jeremiah Pedro
Jeremiah Pedro's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 6 months ago
Joined: Feb 17 2010 - 9:27am
Hey Jay this is how you lose at re-election time. Just saying.
George Richardson
George Richardson's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 years 10 months ago
Joined: Dec 10 2008 - 9:33am
Ever been dive bombed by a Blue Jay? It's all bluff but it makes you want it to go away forever. Bye Jay, I would move to Florida and try to start over. Chris should move to LeRoy and run for Jay's seat. Oh, and Jay, thanks for reading my comment. What's your damn phone number again? I fergit.
George Richardson
George Richardson's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 years 10 months ago
Joined: Dec 10 2008 - 9:33am
http://www.liveleak.com/item?a=view&token=d2e_1298976953 Technically. Non technically it is BS. Why does this remind me of the story above? Hmmm.
Barbara Nicoll
Barbara Nicoll's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 years 5 months ago
Joined: Jul 10 2010 - 11:50am
Fussell says "I'm preparing motions." Just watch folks, this case will go on forever with him in the mix.
Don Antinore
Don Antinore's picture
Offline
Last seen: 8 years 5 months ago
Joined: Jan 26 2011 - 10:14am
You Know all you negative BLOGERS.............we've never had it so good in LeRoy with County Representation who is all about our Village and Town! If you want to/need to run for Jay's seat......go for it and make my prediction a true asessment.....be a looooooser! It's easy! And, by-the-way..........if the "harassment shoe" were on the other foot, it would be you yelling bloody murder, and get off my back! Shut the hell up. If you have a gripe, face the man in chambers and voice your opinion under the First Ammendment......but be prepared for an answer! I am a new business in LeRoy and really appreciate Jay as MY rep in government. LeRoy has had some real duzzies in the governing souls in the recent past.....good riddens and welcome, you up front, honest men and women who care about this little patch of paradise in eastern Genesee County.................
Bea McManis
Bea McManis's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: May 4 2009 - 9:20pm
"Shut the hell up"? Is that the mantra of Mr. Grasso and his supporters? "Shut the hell up", or what? What will happen to anyone who speaks against Mr. Grasso? Are you keeping track? Perhaps you know more about the placing of the sign than you want others to know. It is getting uncomfortable? Please explain how, "thank you for reading my blog" is harassment. Please explain how calling a number, listed on our county's web page is harassment? Say it at a meeting? If the elected officials don't want phone calls, why post the number? "Shut the hell up!"? I waited for the next line, "Or I'll take you out.".
Alan Bedenko
Alan Bedenko's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 9 months ago
Joined: Jul 27 2008 - 8:10pm
@John Roach - I used "allegedly" because it is alleged that the phone call was harassing and made without legitimate purpose. That characterization is the subject matter of the criminal charge, and it's a point that shouldn't be conceded. IOW, I'm being hypertechnical.
Lorie Longhany
Lorie Longhany's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: May 2 2008 - 10:33pm
Don, there is a reason for the scrutiny. People have fought and died for the first amendment. Political free speech is an essential element in a free country. If there is a conviction in this case it will set a very frightening presidence. Even Fred Dicker didn't file charges against Carl Paladino after the somewhat threatening "I'll take you out" exchange. And as far as facing the man in chambers, I'm not so sure that commenter's from this forum could get on an agenda in a public meeting to give snarky remarks about a legislator -- might bog down the meeting and I think there are real items that need debating. Although the theater would be worth an admission fee. Mr. Grasso has every right to face the commenter's on this site. Oh I forgot -- when he's done this in the past he's used aliases and alter egos that he's hid behind. And as far as the "harassment shoe(or trespassing)on the other foot" -- there could have just as easily been a charge filed or attempted, but lets get real here, it would have been as stupid as the 2nd degree harassment charge and again a ludicrous waste of police, DA and court time which costs the tax payers of this county.
Lorie Longhany
Lorie Longhany's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: May 2 2008 - 10:33pm
When does Legislator Grasso's gamesmanship cross the line? Political free speech is everyone's right and privilege. The legislator allegedly chooses to exercise his as a black op, stealthily setting up sock puppet accounts across the state blogosphere for his hit and run attacks. Because of The Batavian's "real name" policy, he had great fun making up colorful names with local flavor. Some of his alleged greatest hits -- Buffalo's own famous pizza shop, Maddie LaNova, car dealership's, Michael Farnsworth and Mike Barney, my husband's ex brother in law, Michael Mancuso, and many more. Many of these stealth commenter's, that speak with so much interest in local politics, are not even registered to vote. Since Howard tightened up his "honesty" rule and IP's are easily traced we don't see many new persona's popping up to delight us here with their election predictions, candidate assessments, opinions on press releases, government business (from an insider), but it hasn't stopped him from allegedly outsourcing his sock puppetry. Just yesterday he allegedly showed up on a popular Buffalo blog WNYMedia.net where Chris Charvella exercises his first amendment right. Names that appear to be suspicious -- geneseeforever and loftus Read for yourself and you decide. http://wnymedia.net/ccharvella/2011/02/lawmakers-ignoring-the-problem-in... http://wnymedia.net/ccharvella/2011/02/bring-on-the-special-election/ While WNYMedia does not have a "real name" policy for posting. Anyone posting, who serves as an elected official, shows a huge lack of honesty and integrity if they're not using their real name while discussing public business. It is the alleged statement about the GCEDC that is disturbing if it's coming from an elected official who's job is to oversee county departments. This is what was written -- "Chris is just mad because he got his ass kicked more than 2 to 1 by Hollis Upson. The ABO report was politically motivated and agitated by state wide unions who were upset with the GCEDC and their stance against the prevailing wage. You know, the wage where janitors get 28 bucks an hour as long as they are union members. Prevailing wage is a job killer." If an elected official made this comment on a hot bed issue of significant importance under a pseudonym we have a serious breach. This representative has proven time and time again that he is dishonest. If he wrote the comment about the GCEDC yesterday on another site, his antics rise to a whole new level.
John Roach
John Roach's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 week 3 days ago
Joined: May 29 2008 - 5:22am
Lorie, I am no Grasso fan and don't live in LeRoy. You do, so the ball is in your court. He ran unopposed twice now, so we'll see if you or somebody you can get will run against him this year. That really is the bottom line.
C. M. Barons
C. M. Barons's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 5 days ago
Joined: Jul 29 2008 - 11:56pm
That wasn't the REAL Don Antinore. Don Antinore is a former high school History teacher, and no teacher discourages participation- even ironically. (Spelling is dubious as well.) Anyone doubting his identity, the new business referred to is Cafe LeRoy, 45 Main Street, LeRoy.
Lorie Longhany
Lorie Longhany's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: May 2 2008 - 10:33pm
He ran unopposed once. That won't be the case this year.
Chris Charvella
Chris Charvella's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 years 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 15 2009 - 4:25pm
and if you're stopping by WNYMedia.net to read Lorie's links, please take a few minutes to read something that I'm very proud of. http://wnymedia.net/ccharvella/2011/03/my-first-evening-with-the-homeles...
Bea McManis
Bea McManis's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: May 4 2009 - 9:20pm
Posted by C. M. Barons on March 3, 2011 - 2:08pm That wasn't the REAL Don Antinore. Don Antinore is a former high school History teacher, and no teacher discourages participation- even ironically. (Spelling is dubious as well.) Anyone doubting his identity, the new business referred to is Cafe LeRoy, 45 Main Street, LeRoy. I hope you are right. Perhaps Howard can do some investigating.
Dave Olsen
Dave Olsen's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 1 week ago
Joined: Oct 12 2008 - 11:48am
That was very touching Chris. Thanks for writing it. This is something important, screw Jay Grasso and most of the other inane crap that people argue about on this site (me included), this is important. If anyone thinks the problems we had with the guys returning from Vietnam was bad, I believe it will be multiplied by 100 when Afghanistan and Iraq are over. The kids fighting the wars have seen all the ribbons on cars and heard all the blather about "Support The Troops" and how Americans love the military, and politicians wringing their hands but when it's over and they come back home and find out very few actually give a crap, and how overwhelmed the VA is, it's going to get ugly. The biggest reason is our government is run by people who for the most part couldn't be bothered with serving their country, only themselves. http://www.wnyc.org/articles/its-free-country/2010/nov/11/number-veteran... God bless you for bringing this out and God bless Loyola House. P.S.1. a boat can be brought onto a ship. 2. a ship has at least one watertight deck extending from bow to stern those are just 2, but I digress
Michele Case
Michele Case's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 2 weeks ago
Joined: Apr 16 2010 - 12:11am
Thanks Lorie for bringing those sites to my attention. I like to hear and respect Chris Charvella and what he has to say. Makes you realize he really does care. I also read your article (Chris) about Loyola House. What a great idea! Anything they need that any of us can help with? Keep up the good works, Ya'all!
George Richardson
George Richardson's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 years 10 months ago
Joined: Dec 10 2008 - 9:33am
Yeah, y'all are involved. There is still hope. Spring is very close if you all just keep the faith. Man, isn't it sweet?

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