A judge in Norfolk, Va., has ordered the creation of a special grand jury to examine the case of a local community organization employee who continued to be paid even though she had been suspended from her job for a dozen years.
As the The Virginian-Pilot reports, Norfolk Circuit Judge Charles E. Poston impaneled the special grand jury Tuesday to look into whether any laws were broken in the case of Jill McGlone (pictured left), a former office assistant at the Norfolk Community Services Board, which provides services to local residents with mental and substance abuse problems.
McGlone was suspended from her job in 1998 for "revealing confidential medical information," but continued to be paid her $26,000 annual salary until the error was caught in May 2010.
In total, McGlone was paid more than $320,000 during the 12 years since her dismissal. Investigations by the city attorney's office and Norfolk police showed no evidence of criminal wrongdoing.
Quoting a city spokeswoman, Virginia TV station WAVY reports that Judge Poston used two state statutes to give him power to request a special grand jury and will appoint a special prosecutor for the case.
The creation of the special grand jury "turn[s] this issue over to the citizens of Norfolk to see if someone should stand trial for a crime," Norfolk Mayor Paul Fraim told the Pilot.
"The citizens will decide whether any criminal activity occurred," he says, "and not necessarily the [city] council or a bureaucrat or prosecutor."
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