To the People

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or TO THE PEOPLE.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Baltimore Mayor Not as Corrupt as Everyone Thought

The basic outline of the indictment, including some real grimy details like stealing gift cards from needy families:
Baltimore Mayor Sheila A. Dixon was charged today with 12 counts of felony theft, perjury, fraud and misconduct in office, becoming the city's first sitting mayor to be criminally indicted.

The case stems in part from at least $15,348 in gifts Dixon allegedly received from her former boyfriend, prominent city developer Ronald H. Lipscomb, while she was City Council president. She also is accused of using as much as $3,400 in gift cards, some donated to her office for distribution to "needy families," to purchase Best Buy electronics and other items for herself and her staff.

Lipscomb was not indicted in the Dixon case, but he and City Councilwoman Helen L. Holton were charged this week in a separate $12,500 bribery scheme. Both cases grew out of a nearly three-year probe by the state prosecutor into City Hall corruption.
I don't have much to say about this; everyone knew she was corrupt and when you have one party running the show for 100 years on a municipal level these charges are pretty tame in comparison to what could be coming out of City Hall. Still though, that's no excuse for her behavior and she deserves to be thrown out of office and into prison. This is the best take that I've read on the story.

More Mayor related news. From this weekend:
Things don’t go smoothly for mayor

The misfortunes of indicted Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon continued Saturday as a boxing ring collapsed when she and a dozen other people were jumping on it during a workout to publicize physical fitness. No one was hurt. Everyone climbed out and continued the workout on the gym floor. A day earlier, Dixon was indicted on theft and perjury charges and accused of accepting illegal gifts, including travel, fur coats and gift cards intended for the poor. Dixon, a 55-year-old Democrat, said she is innocent of the charges.
Ouch.

The award for my favorite non-local news outlet coverage goes to the AP. The opening paragraph in their story:
BALTIMORE (AP) — It's difficult enough to lead a city plagued by rampant violent crime, failing schools, widespread poverty and drug addiction. For Mayor Sheila Dixon, the job figures to get tougher this year — and not just because of the sagging economy.
Double ouch.

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