1st Amendment Rights in Tredyffrin Township

“The dominant purpose of the First Amendment was to prohibit the widespread practice of government suppression of embarrassing information.”          ~ William Orville Douglas, US Supreme Court Justice

According to John DiBuonaventuro’s letter to the citizens, Community Matters posts are an “ongoing effort to discredit our government and its efforts to serve the citizens by creating and fostering an environment of conspiracy among its limited readership.”  I received many emails and phone calls in regards to the inappropriateness of the letter but more importantly, the inappropriate use of taxpayer dollars to post the letter on township letterhead on the township website.  The letter contains a personal attack on me, Community Matters and on those citizens who dare to have an opinion.  For some reason, DiBuonaventuro also feels compelled to mention my failed election in 2009 as a Board of Supervisors candidate … I guess that was contained in the letter, as a ‘just because’, he could … and he did.

I was hopeful that Michelle Kichline as the chair of the Board of Supervisors, the township solicitor Vince Donohue or the township manger Mimi Gleason would recognize the inappropriateness of DiBuronaventuro’s letter on our public website and that the letter would be removed quickly before any further damage was done to me or the other citizens of Tredyffrin Township.

I sent the following email this morning to Mimi Gleason, our township manager:

Mimi,

Who is responsible for Mr. DiBuonaventuro’s letter on the township website?  Was placing the letter on the website sanctioned by you, the township manager?

I await your response.

Pattye Benson

I was extremely surprised by her immediate response below.  Ms. Gleason states that she OK’d the letter on the website with approval from the chair of the Board of Supervisors, Michelle Kichline and township solicitor Vince Donohue.  Folks, as a short-timer whose last day as township manager is Monday, September 17, 2012, Gleason has decided to make her true feelings known about me, Community Matters and for all those who dare to express an opinion.  As sad as I was about the DiBuonaventuro letter, I wanted to believe in our government and the people we elected to serve.  Bob Byrne, editor of TE Patch received a similar response from Gleason to his inquiry about the township website and DiBuonaventuro’s letter.

If the Board of Supervisors had been more forthcoming about the situation when the story first broke in the Main Line Media News, the outcome of the situation would have been very different.  If the public had received any assurance from the Board of Supervisors that they were reviewing the internal investigation report of the Police Department, or if the public had known that the District Attorney’s office had reviewed the report, if, if, if, … no one said anything, there was no communication or explanation.  Were it not that I went from the District Attorney, to the District Judge and then to the Police Chief, we would still have questions and no answers.  The summary information I provided on Community Matters was not secret, the residents could have had, and should have had it.

So what is the bottom line?   Gleason’s email says to me that to hold our government and its elected officials accountable by the citizenry is not acceptable in Tredyffrin Township.    You read her response and be the judge.

Pattye,

I think it is interesting that you seek information from me now, but not before starting a storyline full of inaccuracies and innuendos that had the potential to harm people’s reputations.  Correcting falsehoods well after the fact does not undo the damage from your original posts.  You feed cynicism and assumptions of impropriety when there is absolutely no basis for it.

You have done the same thing with the assisted living facility.  So much of what you have written on that topic is factually incorrect.  Why don’t you make an effort to get accurate information before you write articles and leave impressions with your readers?   You have to know that your so-called legal expert has no expertise, and therefore I can only conclude that you share his agenda to make the Township and the Board of Supervisors look bad, without any regard for the truth or ethics.  That has been a disappointing conclusion to arrive at.

In answer to your question, it is unusual to post a statement from an individual Supervisor, but given the inaccurate and derogatory statements and innuendo publicly made about John DiBuonaventuro, I decided to approve the posting of the letter on the Township website.  In this case, he was the subject of baseless public speculation simply because he is a Tredyffrin Supervisor.  The circumstances justified the use of the website to publicly defend him, carrying with it the implicit endorsement of the Township to the accuracy of his statements.  The Chairman of the Board of Supervisors and the Township Solicitor agreed that it was appropriate for the letter to go on the website.

Mimi

39 Comments

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  1. Wow. As a long time “public” official, I can promise you the view from the high road is so much nicer than the spot they have claimed in the gutter. The police saw fit to interview JB as part of their internal investigation, so why be bitter at the public being savvy enough to make the connection? As township manager, Ms. Gleason would be far more appreciated if she managed the township instead of waiting for someone to come to her. This is a bad decision. What is legal (presumably taxpayers have now paid for a solicitor opinion that it’s ok to post a personal tirade on public letterhead on a taxpayer funded website)…what is legal does not constitute what is right. WHERE is the common sense that accepts heat that occasionally goes along with light? If it’s personal, keep it personal. Mr. DiB could have launched his attack right here on CM, but instead expanded the awareness. Since Ms. Gleason did not post this publicly, I guess no apology is necessary…but it does reflect her lame duck status. Michelle Kichline once worked with the School District solicitor–we turned to her for advice. I am confident that her good sense will prevail here.

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  2. It’s interesting to contrast the professional, factual responses Ms. Benson received from Supervisors Chair Michelle Kichline, DA Hogan, District Court Judge Tom Tartaglio, and Tredyffrin Police Superintendent Andy Giaimo with the unprofessional, emotion filled responses from Township Manager Gleason and Supervisor DiBuonaventuro.
    .
    It will be very telling to see how long Mr. DiBuonaventuro’s letter stays on the Township’s web site. These people run your township?? Can’t wait to hear commentary from the next Township meeting.

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  3. Typical circle the wagons response.

    One thing I learned in LM about township government is that they are never wrong – – that is, they will never admit it.

    Not only will they not admit they are wrong, but they will seek to discredit and silence anyone who challenges them for being wrong.

    That in itself is a slam on the First Amendment by government. The amazing thing is these public “officials” have sworn an oath to “support, obey and defend” the First Amendment and the entire Constitution.

    In that letter John Douchebag (or however you spell his last name) calls anonymous bloggers (not that I’m particularly anonymous) “cowards”.

    Federal courts have ruled anonymous blogging is a constitutional right across the board.

    Let me ask John Douchebag – are those who believe in separation of church and state and freedom of religion cowards too, or do you only have a problem with the part of the First Amendment you swore an oath to defend that references freedom of speech?

    The only conclusion that can be drawn here is that the all those elected and appointed to public service in Tredyffrin could care less about their oath of office, their solemn word of honor, the citizens they serve, and are completely lacking in any integrity.

    And, I still say Miss Suzy got preferential treatment from local government because there are way too many coincidences.

    Just because various government entities from courts to supervisors to cops deny it (after they took the time to get their stories straight) and it can’t be proven otherwise does not mean it still does not smell rotten.

    I’d say at the very least, and IMO, two veteran police officers acted in a manner on their own to let a public official off the hook for the benefit of their own careers.

    If that is all that happened, the entire township leadership is to blame for fostering an environment where police officers feel they can miss court hearings when their “leaders” are charged with a crime – and remember, this is the only missed hearing the police chief is aware of.

    What an amazing coincidence – and especially after the favorable treatment Miss Suzy got for her 2010 DUI. I have never heard of someone being accepted into ARD and having their record expunged with child endangerment charges dropped for driving drunk with young kids in the car, but that one is on the DA – which means something smells rotten at the county level too.

    And for those reading who are not government “officials”, what do you think the odds are of the Tredyffrin police not showing for your hearing for a speeding ticket, a DUI or whatever?

    I think we all know the answer to that, and that’s why it’s impossible to say Miss Suzy did not get preferential treatment – and especially for the 2010 DUI with dropped child endangerment charges that was expunged while she was apparently dating John Douchebag.

    Again – what an amazing coincidence!

    And yes, I know my words are strong. That’s how angry that disgraceful letter on the township website makes me – and should make any citizen who cares at all about good government.

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    flyersfan Reply:

    John Douchebag>? I have been censored for more than that.Perhaps an apology is warranted? Geez/..

    When you brought up separation of church and state, I am amazed at how often it is misconstrued, misapplied and essentially a rewritten clause relative to its Constitutional intent…

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  4. JD may have done Community Matters a favor and hurt himself more by publishing the letter on the TT web site given that the blog has “limited readership” as JD claims. Community Matters is now advertised to the entire citizenry of TT in his letter. Those that haven’t been aware of the events and timeline surrounding this discussion before now are probably encouraged to go find out what all fuss is about. They can now go to MLMN, TE Patch or Community Matters to catch up on all the details along with all the comments, anonymous or not.

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  5. When is this going to end!! Bad as it was that JD wrote the ridiculous letter, the township manager has his back and writing this garbage to a Tredyffrin resident. Based on Gleason’s response, I guess she does so with full support of the township attorney and the entire board of supervisors.

    And to think that I moved to Tredyffrin to witness this crap. I am outraged. This is supposed to be good place to want to live and raise your kids, what kind of message are the elected officials sending to the residents. I’ll tell you the message, DONT EXPRESS AN OPINION, unless you know that 100% of the supervisors, township manager, and township attorney share your opinion!

    Even if you think you have their support, you still might not want to voice your opinion, as they could change their minds.
    And this is supposed to be a free country, unbelievable I say.

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  6. And now you see why people have turned to anonymous comments. Ms. Gleason references two people — not even by name in the case of Mr. Petersen.

    I totally get why they are annoyed. I do not get why they have turned the township website into a BULLY pulpit…emphasis on bully.

    Do read the TE Patch editorial. http://te.patch.com/articles/who-has-final-approval-on-tredyffrin-wesbite

    This is no longer about citizen journalists and derogatory comments. This is about oppressive government tactics. You don’t have to know or like Ms. Benson to be afraid of what Ms. Gleason alleges to be “her decision”….to post the letter.

    And really — if she has approval from the township solicitor to do this, I would ask to see the opinion he gave. There is no sunshine issue with any of this. John DB was interviewed as part of the internal investigation. I’d like to see a summary of that interview. We were told ther was a page of questions. I don’t even need to see the answers — I want to see the questions. Because the police asked them — and no where do I see Mr. D coming after them for their conduct. But Pattye produces a forum where people ask questions — and speculate on answers. There is no national security issue here. This is about implied preferential treatment. Anyone who has ever cried about a speeding ticket and had the officer settle for a warning understands this. It’s that the stakes were higher and the implications were larger. IF the police investigated this quickly enough for Hogan and others to sign off on it, then why didn’t Ms. Gleason make a statement to prevent this kind of public speculation? The only reason people come here to talk is because it’s an exchange without any requirement that someone do something. Blogs are about opinions. They don’t need to be anything else. Our police chief has given numerous press conferences and press releases. In this case, he said “clerical error.” Pattye’s subsequent follow up resulted in a broader explanation that served the purpose. She put this to rest.

    Now it cannot rest. As a resident of this community, I am genuinely fearful of my name being associated with my comments. Look what Ms. Gleason said about Mr. Petersen because he has been vocal and yes — belligerent — in not taking no for an answer. There is a conspiracy about the Duffy tract because the process makes no sense. When people ask questions, every answer comes in executive session and the rest of us have to listen to PC people say “I’m confident the underlying regulations will take care of it.”

    Mr. Darton — I am sorry this is the welcoming view you are experiencing. I have lived here for 50 years….I am moving and I expected to be sad about it. I’m relieved. This is just TOO ugly.

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    Pattye Benson Reply:

    TR, thank you for this comment – you really do lay it out. Tredyffrin Township’s website has indeed turned into a bully pulpit. If this kind of diatribe is to continue from supervisor DiBuonventuro and his fellow supervisors and the township manager, I might suggest a ‘blog’ tab for the township website. That way they can create the perfect forum for their expressions of disdain for all those citizens that dare to disagree. However, they would have to ‘turn off’ the comment section because, ‘we’ the residents of Tredyffrin Township are not allowed an opinion.

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  7. My regards and respect go out to the people who seem to be subject to repression by Tredyffrin Township in their constitutional right to free speech and their right to information. Pattye Benson went out of her way to present in a factual manner all the background to quell the ongoing speculation about JD’s involvement in the reported incident. She cleared JD of any involvement more than once and yet received this unwarranted attack. And worse the attack is supported by those who should know better. Why is this? It doesn’t make any sense.

    Pattye you are making a great contribution to the community in many ways with Community Matters, Historic House Tour, Paoli Blues Fest, etc. Kudos to you. Don’t let this attack get to you most will see it for what it is.

    It is extremely troublesome that JD and the township reacted this way.

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    Independent Citizen Reply:

    I strongly support Silence Dogood’s post (AKA Benjamin Franklin). That he could reach out from the past to defend an abused citizen trying to do the right thing is great. Where are the patriots and defendants of our rights today? Not in Tredyffrin I guess.

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  8. The township just does not know when to stop. They are just making themselves look worse and worse. And they wonder why people post anonymously. It appears that if you have an opinion in this township you will be subjected to direct personal attacks from officials!

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  9. Did Mimi say the same thing to the police when they questioned JDB in regards to this case????

    “In this case, he was the subject of baseless public speculation simply because he is a Tredyffrin Supervisor. The circumstances justified the use of the website to publicly defend him, carrying with it the implicit endorsement of the Township to the accuracy of his statements. The Chairman of the Board of Supervisors and the Township Solicitor agreed that it was appropriate for the letter to go on the website.

    Mimi ”

    So are we to assume the police questioned each member of the BOS on this subject, or did they also fall victim to baseless speculation and limit their questions to Supervisor DB. ?? Supt. Giaimo said they had a page of questions for him. Whatever for????????????????

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  10. Ms. Gleason wrote: “The circumstances justified the use of the website to publicly defend him, carrying with it the implicit endorsement of the Township to the accuracy of his statements.”

    The Township only can “endorse” a statement if a majority of a quorum of the Board of Supervisors votes to do so. If a quorum of the Board discussed this supposed endorsement, the Sunshine Act required that those discussions take place at a public meeting:

    “Official action and deliberations by a quorum of the members of an agency shall take place at a meeting open to the public” 65 Pa. C.S. sec. 704.

    So it seems to me that Ms. Gleason either: (1) is incorrect when she suggests that the Township “endorsed” the statement, or (2) has admitted that the Board violated the Sunshine Act.

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    Pattye Benson Reply:

    JudgeNJury — It has been awhile since you weighed in on Community Matters, thank you for your thoughts.

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    Keith Knauss Reply:

    The Sunshine Act, most likely, has not been violated.
    .
    First, a quorum of the Board would have to either be physically present in one location or in real-time communications via speaker phone. There is no law that prevents Ms. Gleason from contacting each supervisor individually by phone or email.
    .
    Second, it’s unclear whether posting a letter on the Townships’ web site is “official” action. “Administrative” action is specifically exempted from the Sunshine Act and Ms. Gleason is an administrator.
    .
    That said, it would be interesting to use the Right to Know Law to request all records (emails, etc) dealing with this subject. I have some experience in this area.

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    JudgeNJury Reply:

    Mr. Knauss:

    To be clear, I did not say and am not suggesting that the posting of the letter on the webpage, in an of itself, is a violation of the Sunshine Act. Rather, what I am suggesting is that Ms. Gleason’s contention that the Township has “endorsed” the letter either is not true or, if true, was an action taken in violation of the Sunshine Act.

    Ms. Gleason could have called every single member of the Board and every single member could have told her that they, individually, “endorse” the letter. But unless and until a majority of a quorum of the Board votes at a public meeting to endorse the letter, the TOWNSHIP has not properly endorsed the letter.

    Therefore, Ms. Gleason’s contention that the township has endorsed the letter cannot be true.

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    Keith Knauss Reply:

    I think Ms Gleason used the words “implicit endorsement”. That might give her some wiggle room. In any case, a question at the next Township meeting for the Supervisors might be, “Did you endorse the letter?”

    JudgeNJury Reply:

    Another question one might consider asking, in addition to whether the Board endorsed the letter (and, if so, when and how since, apparently, there was no public meeting), is:

    What is the Township’s policy on the circumstances under which a Supervisor may use Township letterhead?

    If there is no policy, there should be. Take this hypothetical situation: Suppose Supervisor A sends a letter on Township letterhead to his son, who owns a landscaping business, purporting to hire him to do some landscaping work for the Township, even though the Board never voted to give the son the job. That letter would carry the “implicit endorsement” of the Township. As such, it would expose the Township (i.e., the taxpayers) to potential liability for a purported contract that was never actually endorsed by the Township by way of a majority vote of the Board at a public meeting.

    Permitting Supervisors to use Township letterhead for personal reasons is a recipe for trouble.

    Township Reader Reply:

    Little known fact — Ms. Gleason is a licensed attorney.

    If that is not true, I apologize.

    *Note that I think we should all say that at the end of every post…..

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  11. Here’s a little more fun from the police website.  They have the press release info on “every” thing they released.  There is nothing about Suzy P. in it from the May arrest.There is a major release when husband Jay was arrested in Oct 2011.
    The fun part–there is a search filter that lets you filter by month and year.  When you search for July—ithe first time we are advised that Ms P (then Mes. Ciccarone legally) the diltermsearch offers you every year but 2010.  Seriously–who could orchestrate this? No conspiracy theories necessary. Clearly the world is doing everything possible to save Ms. P…so,I assume she is worth it.Thanks to the JD and Mimi letters/emails, even the uninterested are learning about this.

    Remember Watergate. It wasn’t the break-in that destroyed the President…it was the cover-up.

    WHY is this so hard a lesson to remember? Because now that JD and MImi have escalated this, I think the details need more public scrutiny about a police department that may or may not be deciding which defendants should get the breaks. Clearly they have a press release policy that makes that distinction.

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    Tredyffrin Resident Reply:

    Yeah, I was able to find this press release for a public drunkenness incident that occurred three days before Pratowski’s incident. Why should he get a press release but not SP.

    PUBLIC DRUNKENNESS

    5/31/2012 8:45 AM

    PUBLIC DRUNKENNESS

    5/25/12 at 0330 hours – 1800 block of Lancaster Avenue in Paoli. While on patrol, an officer observed a male sleeping in a parked car with the driver’s door open while at the gas pumps. When contacted, a strong odor of alcohol was detected on his breath. Mark Fischer, 57, of Phoenixville PA was then cited for public drunkenness.

    This is the part that I still don’t understand. Why is this police department discriminating as to who gets press releases and who doesn’t?

    And also did Pratowski resign or not? I am assuming she did hopefully and we just haven’t been advised by the township (shocker).

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    Township Reader Reply:

    I need to explain the 2010 press release comment. It turns out that no releases are there for 2010, not just July. I apologize for the oversight. Indeed, this is why blogs are to be read, not worshipped…in speculating, some people reading this including JDB get confused about the source of the information.

    The reason the debate continues is because while a supervisor doesn’t have to sit there and take it at a meeting —it’s a public forum and all parties have access to the microphone. the flaw in Ms. Gleason’s logic is that the public does not have access to the township website for rebuttal, which is why it should not be made available for a personal attack. Mr. JDB should have written here or to the editor–where responses to the comment could be shared with those who read his letter. I eagerly anticipate the solicitor sharing his rationale for approving the post. I will never believe Ms. Gleason’s assertion that Michelle Kichline specifically authorized it.

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  12. my 2 cents…Pattye did yeomans work in garnering the facts from all parties.. But there was a lot of discussion/innuendo and speculation about JD BEFORE the hard work was done. And JD is entitled to his first amendment rights, imo, even via the Tred Website outlet because he i a public figure.. I have compimented Pattye on her post haste good research.. My impression is we should move on to another topic. Maybe the school contract, or the eagles first game tomorrow.. But this should end now. Thanks

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    cp Reply:

    I agree with ya! Pattye did solid investigative work. The “officials” involved gave weak, contradictory answers to important questions. I think Pattye’s closing the issue was done with style. JD’s letter was less than flattering to himself. As noted by others, his letter called attention to the issue and this blog to people who formerly had no idea of the contentious situation. JD’s letter starts out disputing without even detailing the subject. He was grasping at straws. It screams to be merely dismissed!!! On the other hand, Pattye – you need to grow a thicker skin. JD’s letter didn’t mean anything to the Community Matters community. That sort of lashing out comes with the territory.

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  13. PS.. We are turning into the Old Radnor . With so many outlets for information or disinformation Im afraid it creates misunderstandings and discord.. Like the saturation of news programs that aren’t really news programs anymore, we may have reached the threshold of too much communication. pick and pick and pick and then you have paralysis… Posturing and attacks … yep the old Radnor. we all can do better

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    politeia Reply:

    Yes, but why does the New Radnor not have these problems?

    Because it has a new board and a new manager that show deference to citizens and would never do what JD did.

    And while JD has a right to exercise his views, it should be done in a manner where he himself does not disparage the First Amendment rights of others.

    That is the true disgrace in my view (not that I agree with other points/personal attacks in his inane open letter) – and especially when he has sworn an oath to defend the free speech rights of those he disparages for exercising those rights.

    It is contemptuous and hypocritical behavior that goes beyond the pale. It is childish and unbecoming of supervisor. It is petty, disdainful, insolent and supercilious hooey like the whining of a ten year old who has had his favorite toy taken by another kid in the sandbox.

    Perhaps it is time to clean house and have a New Tredyffrin where elected and appointed public servants are deferential to and work for the taxpayer-owners of the township – like the New Radnor does with its lesson learned.

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    cp Reply:

    Bravo – It is time to clean house in every room …. the BOS and the School Board.

    [Reply]

  14. Judge N Jury and a few others —
    I completely agree with the fact that this whole episode with the website use is a matter of policy, not personal.

    A new wrinkle: In reading the MLMN follow-up on this, where the reporter references the original article, he makes a point of saying that Mr. DB was not mentioned in the article. Indeed, as the article now shows in the paper, he was not mentioned. But happily I had read it earlier, so thanks to the miracles of computer cache, I had the original article available. In fact, the picture, now only captioned with Ms. Pratowski’s name, had originally included the simple caption of
    “John Dibuonaventuro (sic) of Berwyn and Suzy Pratowski of Wayne center in white at a 2011 Devereux charity event. File photo Joan Bang”

    Interesting that the photo has now been repcaptioned, and the reporter has said Mr. D was not mentioned in it. So the blog speculation now turns to : This reporter, did he have a connection to Ms. Pratowski’s ex-husband. I have specifically written the paper to ask this. In reviewing this nightmarish escalation that resulted in JDB trashing this blog and Pattye in particular, I wonder if all the “trouble” didn’t start with the paper leaving the intentional impression that Mr. JDB was associated with Ms. Pratowski. Had the picture never been posted, or his name left out, would any of this become even on a radar screen? The problem with Ms. Pratowski’s fitness for the ZHB is a separate issue and the township has a method for addressing that.

    I confess that I was heavily involved in speculating about JDB’s role in this — and regret that speculation felt like accusation. I now feel that the MLMN provoked this debate as to the possible involvement of JDB. And unless I hear that the writer, who rarely writes about this “end” of the Main Line is completely unfamiliar with Ms. P ex-husband, I will feel like we have all been played.

    Light can and does produce heat. I still believe that the fact that the TT Police interviewed JDB validates the speculation on this site. It was a link that had to be addressed and resolved. But for Mr. D, I believe his wrath should have been addressed to the MLMN, and that’s where the rant belonged.

    So now I will wait to hear from MLMN as to the reporter’s possible affiliation with the other party (who is still awaiting trial on cyber-stalking of Ms. Pratowski, continued countless times over the past year). Otherwise, we all should accept that the MLMN willfully attempted to create a false impression about Mr. DB’s current association with Ms. Pratowski. But why???

    I close again that I have NO INFORMATION other than observation to “PROVE” any of my speculations. I am sharing them for the purpose of discussion and not to make any case for or against any party.

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    politeia Reply:

    Interesting points that should be clarified by MLMN – and points to why JD should have addressed MLMN directly without his baseless and viscous personal attacks on Pattye.

    However, let’s not forget that JD was apparently dating Miss Suzy when she had her record expunged for being arrested for DUI and child endangerment in 2010 for driving drunk with her young children in her car.

    Generally, a DUI is only accepted into ARD and only expunged if there are not extenuating circumstances like a car accident, excessive BAC, no kids in the car etc.

    This does bring onto question possible favoritism played in 2010 due to Suzy’s relationship with JD and his connections.

    Yes, it is speculation, but it is reasonable speculation given JD’s strong relationship with the police (who work closely with the DA) and the fact I have never heard of a DUI with kids in the car being completely expunged.

    What a DA would generally due in that situation for a first offense is offer a plea to drop the child endangerment charge if a guilty plea is taken on the DUI without ARD and and thus without expunging the record.

    Since JD was apparently dating Miss Suzy at the time, and his resume promotes his close relationship with the police, I have no prob with MLMN mentioning in the caption of the picture both their names as they stood next to each other.

    I agree it does not make MLMN look good for having changed the caption. They should have just left it and let it speak for itself as I see their professional and personal relationship as absolutely relevant to what happened — and in particular in 2010, with the present dropped charges making many wonder further about preferential treatment.

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  15. http://ujsportal.pacourts.us/DocketSheets/CPReport.ashx?docketNumber=CP-15-CR-0004023-2010

    Docket sheet for the 2010 arrest.

    Court Summary for 2010 arrest
    http://ujsportal.pacourts.us/DocketSheets/CourtSummaryReport.ashx?docketNumber=CP-15-CR-0004023-2010

    It appears to me that she served 48 hours and was paroled as part of a plea agreement, and was supervised for 6 months.

    More interesting is that she filed a complaint against her stbex-husband in Sept 2010 and he was arrested in Sept 2011.

    This is all a very personal dispute and I would like to end it. The police investigated JDB role in any of it, and found him not involved. I’d point my finger at the reporter for MLMN and see if he is buddies with the ex husband. We are being played. …and Pattye Benson is taking the heat for it. Mimi Gleason is sick of all of us and vented on her way out the door.

    Time to make the doughnuts.

    [Reply]

    politeia Reply:

    She received the minimum possible sentence and fine under law for the DUI given her BAC and had the most serious charge – which will cause you to lose constitutional rights for life – dropped.

    It does not say in the docket if she was accepted into ARD and I’m not sure it would. Your record would not be expunged until you have completed all alcohol programs/probation and have applied to have it expunged.

    I had read elsewhere she was accepted into ARD, but that may or may not be the case from the docket.

    However, she certainly was not punished severely as she received the minimum possible sentence and fine under the law for the DUI while having the M1 child endangerment charge dropped – which would have caused her to lose constitutional rights for life.

    I absolutely agree Pattye has been taken to task for doing nothing wrong.

    Gleason and JD have been way out of line in how they responded. They could have handled it much more professionally with a letter that did not personally attack Pattye and bloggers.

    I would not say people have been “played” by MLMN. It never occurred to me JD was the designated driver from the first story even with the picture captions.

    Even without JD every being named by MLMN in a picture caption I still would have smelled something rotten just for the police not showing for a hearing for a public official – and even if it was her first offense (which it was not).

    I am still of the opinion that at the very least the two veteran police officers chose not to show knowing she was a public official (and perhaps knowing she had dated JD) as a move that they felt would protect or benefit their careers.

    It’s just too much of a coincidence since these hearings are never missed.

    I agree this has been blogged to nth degree and there is not much more to say unless something new develops.

    [Reply]

  16. I feel like I am living in a communist country. I believe we need to ask why this letter was posted on the Township website. We are being called “The People’s Republic of Tredyffrin” for good reason . For too many years, some well-qualified individuals have lost close elections due to the strength of the political machine of one party. Now that machine is acting in a very bullying, disturbing manner. We need to stand up for ourselves as citizens and take back our Township. We all have a right to free speech, and our Township website should not be used for a bullying personal diatribe. We all need to show up at the BOS meeting on September 17. I know it’s scary given the threat of retribution from the machine that runs Tredyffrin Township, but is there anyone who is willing to stand up and speak up for our rights as citizens?

    [Reply]

  17. Not sure I agree Ann, and if you have lived under communist rule you would not use that term lightly. We are not perfect to be sure, but you are over the top. Perhaps we can argue over and over where the proper forum would be for the JD rebuttal.

    So you want to go and show up and yell at these almost volunteers because he posted a rebuttal on the Tred website?

    Maybe JD, a decent man, just had enough. He asked for permission, it was granted and there you go. Maybe its time to move on. While the location of his remarks may upset you., the content may be worth reading for meaning.

    Chairman Mao.

    [Reply]

    politeia Reply:

    Well, the letter has been removed form the township website, so some person(s) wisely overruled JD, Gleason and whoever the solicitor is. Perhaps they themselves saw the error of their ways.

    I am the one who referenced Tredyffrin as the “People’s Republic of Tredyffrin” over on MLMN and it was repeated on a another blog – Chester County Ramblings.

    I would have had no problem with JD setting the record straight in a letter-to-editor on MLMN or on Community Matters in a professional and level-headed manner.

    Using the township website to personally attack individuals who were exercising their constitutional rights of free speech and to petition the government (when township officials have sworn an oath to defend said rights) smacks of totalitarianism – a political system that seeks to have no limits to its authority over citizens together with a strong use of propaganda – with the township website where you can’t respond providing for the propaganda and JD and other Tredyffrin government agents ignoring their oaths of office in a manner where they did not feel they had any limits to their authority and they could intimidate those exercising their rights in complete violation of the U.S. Constitution via the letter on the township website.

    Communism in the People’s Republic of China provides for a totalitarian regime and I feel the behavior of those I mentioned above provided for a fair comparison given their atrocious behavior.

    Needless to say, the authoritarian behavior that usurped the limits placed on them by Constitution (and threw out all common sense) by JD, Gleason and others does not make Tredyffrin a communist township, but I feel their bad behavior in this instance was right in line with what you would see in a totalitarian type of regime.

    How effortlessly JD and Gleason did this makes me wonder whether other aspects of township business are managed with a totalitarian, iron fist when they have no such authority in a constitutional republic that provides for democratic, representative government.

    [Reply]

  18. politeia,
    Since the letter has been taken down, I really don’t know what is going on at the headquarters. Im thinking, though, that since JD was implicated in this matter, and the level of concern was hightened because he is a BOS, perhaps it was within normal limits to answer as a public officer on the public website? Why doesn’t that make sense?

    [Reply]

  19. If that letter was just meant to be up temporarily to blast citizens for exercising their rights, then the township certainly has not learned its lesson.

    Like I said, if JD wanted to write a letter-to-editor to MLMN or this blog explaining his position in a professional manner that did not personally attack citizens for exercising their rights, that would have been fine.

    To use the township website for totalitarian propaganda and to try and intimidate citizens for exercising their rights goes beyond the pale.

    [Reply]

    Pattye Benson Reply:

    politeia, how I wish you would come to Tredyffrin Twp supervisor meeting next Monday, 9/17 and state your opinion!

    [Reply]

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