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Article published February 8, 2013
Witnesses for judge attack clerk's credibility
PITTSBURGH — Defense attorneys for suspended Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin have called their first two witnesses. The retired Superior Court judge and state pension official attacked the testimony of a former law clerk on Friday. The clerk, Lisa Sasinoski, had said she was fired by Melvin for complaining about having to do campaign work in 2003. But the witnesses produced documents at the Pittsburgh trial suggesting that Sasinoski wasn't fired but transferred from Melvin's staff to the Supreme Court. Melvin and her sister are accused of cheating taxpayers out of more than $33,000 by using Melvin's former Superior Court staffers and those of a third sister, former state Sen. Jane Orie, to do political campaign work for Melvin.