A Wake County grand jury today handed down indictments alleging that a top aide to Gov. Bev Perdue‘s 2008 campaign schemed to pay a staffer $32,000 for work that was kept off the books in violation of state election laws.
The new charges, all felonies, are part of a long-running investigation into Perdue campaign activities that have focused on expenditures that would have triggered election law violations for exceeding the limit on personal donations if they had been reported. Earlier this year a retired state magistrate was charged with obstruction of justice for allegedly trying to hide an illegal campaign flight.
Wake County District Attorney Colon Willoughby has said that Perdue, a former lieutenant governor and state lawmaker, is not a target of the probe, but today’s indictment reached into the campaign’s inner circle.
“The conduct of the governor has not been an issue, nor any other elected official,” Willoughby said. “She cooperated in the investigation, was interviewed, we asked her not to talk about the facts of the case. We thought it might be inappropriate, and there might be additional charges.”
Peter Reichard, a Greensboro businessman who served as the Perdue campaign’s finance director, was charged with obstruction of justice. Reichard has been a key player in the gubernatorial campaigns of Perdue and her predecessor, Mike Easley, both Democrats. Reichard served as Easley’s finance director for his 2000 gubernatorial campaign.
Reichard’s attorney, Hart Miles, said in a statement that his client was disappointed to learn of the indictments. Miles urged the public to withhold judgment until all the facts are known.
“We are prepared to go to trial if necessary,” Miles said. “But, Peter’s goal is to work in good faith with the District Attorney to see if this case can be resolved without a lengthy and costly trial. Peter is a man who accepts responsibility for his actions.”
The indictment against him said his business, Tryon Capital Ventures, received $32,000 in contributions or loans from Charles Michael Fulenwider, a Perdue contributor from Morganton who owns fast food restaurants and had arranged several campaign flights for her. Reichard used the $32,000, disguised as consulting services, to compensate Julia Leigh Sitton, who later became the director of the governor’s Western office. She is also known as Juleigh Sitton.
Liberal NC Governor Beverly Perdue Suggests Suspending Congressional Elections
This is the liberal nonsense we, in North Carolina, have been putting up with for the last couple of years. Conservative Thom Tillis, who engineered a Republican takeover of the NC house, has been rolling back most of the nonsense since elected.
The last vestage is this sorry excuse for a liberal Governor, who thinks suspending general elections might be good policy, if not for awhile.
How clueless can one be? No limits appear imminent in Democrat inspired idiocy alas…and this is the supreme leader of NC…God help us all.~BLS
N.C. Republican Party Chairman Tom Fetzer on Monday highlighted two more sets of contributions to Gov. Bev Perdue’s 2008 campaign that he said deserve scrutiny.
Fetzer listed two sets of four-figure contributions.
The first group included contributions from nine executives at Kinston-based Hillco, the parent company of nursing home company Britthaven. Four additional donors in the group appear to be related to those executives. One of the company’s nursing homes in Chapel Hill is under investigation by the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation over patients who had opiates in their blood.
The executive assistant to Robert Hill, owner and CEO of Hillco, asked that any questions be submitted by e-mail. He did not immediately respond to them.
The second group of donations came from four executives in a Pennsylvania development group, Dilsheimer Communities, with a coastal N.C. development. Three other contributors appear to be related to the Dilsheimers, and all gave within a two-day period. Fetzer emphasized that the donors have given to N.C. campaigns more than those in their home state.
A man who answered the phone at Dilsheimer’s offices said the company had no comment.
Earlier this month, Perdue forfeited $48,000 in contributions from employees of Atlantic Packaging Co. after Fetzer questioned the donations. Perdue’s campaign said there was a question of whether the donors had been reimbursed by the company.
It is illegal in North Carolina to give money in someone else’s name.
Marc Farinella, a Perdue consultant, said donors routinely solicit contributions from colleagues or hold a fundraiser, which leads to checks written on the same day.
“There is no indication that there is anything wrong with these contributions,” Farinella said.
- Grand jury indicts 3 with ties to Perdue campaign (charlotte.news14.com)
- Veto debate follows NC legislature’s vote to repeal state’s capital Racial Justice Act (sentencing.typepad.com)
- Bill Ayers Talks About The Fundraiser He Hosted For Obama (The One Obama’s Campaign Claimed Was a “Debunked” “Myth”) (minx.cc)
- Perdue Suggests Suspending Elections (politicalwire.com)
- Perdue blames bad economy for NC endowment setback Source: The News & Observer (curmilus.wordpress.com)
- North Carolina General Assembly Votes To Repeal Landmark Racial Justice Law (thinkprogress.org)
- North Carolina Governor Proposes Ignoring Constitution And Suspending Congressional Elections For Two Years (thinkprogress.org)
- Did We Just Get A Preview Of The General Election? (kaystreet.wordpress.com)
- Former Maine lawmaker indicted on gun charges (seattletimes.nwsource.com)