- The Washington Times - Thursday, August 12, 2010


Governor’s aide to face assault charge

NEW YORK | An aide to New York Gov. David A. Paterson surrendered Thursday to New York City authorities on assault charges stemming from a 2009 domestic-violence case that touched off an evidence-tampering investigation in Albany.

David Johnson turned himself in to investigators with the Bronx District Attorney's Office on misdemeanor assault charges and was awaiting arraignment.

Mr. Paterson’s involvement in the case he made a phone call to the accuser, who soon dropped her allegations caused him serious political damage, even though investigators found no evidence of witness tampering.

Buffeted by other ethics questions about World Series tickets, the Democratic governor soon dropped plans to run for a full term this fall, while saying he intended to finish the year in office.

Mr. Johnson was suspended without pay in February, and Paterson spokesman Morgan Hook said Thursday that his status has not changed. The governor's office had no further comment.

The confrontation occurred on Halloween, with Mr. Johnson and his then-girlfriend, Sherr-una Booker. Angry over how she was dressed, she said he choked her, threw her against a dresser and ripped her Halloween costume. The case was initially handled in Family Court and dropped without prejudice because Miss Booker did not appear for a hearing.

Mr. Johnson’s attorney, Oscar Michelen, declined to comment Thursday until he could review the charges.

The attorney general's office investigated whether intervention by Mr. Paterson and the state troopers in the days after the confrontation caused Miss Booker to call off the case.

But a report by retired Judge Judith Kaye, who was put in charge of the review, found no criminal activity by anyone except maybe Mr. Johnson.


Democrat quits over Palin remark

CONCORD | A New Hampshire Democrat has quit the state legislature after cracking a joke on Facebook about Sarah Palin’s death.

Rep. Timothy Horrigan of Durham posted a comment Wednesday that said a “dead Palin wd be even more dangerous than a live one” and she “is all about her myth & if she was dead she cdn’t commit any more gaffes.”

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