LANCASTER COUNTY, Pa. — Philadelphia-based law firm Kleinbard LLC sent a cease and desist letter Tuesday to the Lancaster County Commissioners on behalf of District Attorney Craig Stedman.
The letter claims that the county commissioners office made false and defamatory statements related to District Attorney Stedman’s alleged misuse and misappropriation of drug forfeiture funds to lease and maintain a sport utility vehicle to travel for district attorney business.
It also claims that the county commissioners’ investigation or audits of District Attorney Stedman’s alleged misuse of funds is unlawful as the funds, specifically, is within the oversight authority of the country controller and the Pennsylvania Office of the Attorney General, not the county commissioners.
The letter adds that District Attorney Stedman is considering pursuing formal legal remedies against the county commissioners.
“Your [the county commissioners’] statements not only seriously impugn the character and reputation of (District Attorney) Stedman, but they also improperly impute serious wrongful conduct tom him, constituting defamation per se without the need to prove actual damages,” a portion of the letter stated.
Christina Hausner, the Lancaster County Solicitor, issued a response in the form of a letter on Thursday.
“The Lancaster County Commissioners will not accede your demands that they cease and desist from making comments about and refrain from reviewing Mr. Stedman’s use of drug forfeiture funds, and his receipt of mileage reimbursement and other payments from the County’s general fund,” a portion of the letter stated.
The letter went on to dispute claims made by Kleinbard LLC, on behalf of District Attorney Stedman.