Recall petition case against Delgaudio to continue in June

A recall petition case that aims to remove Loudoun County Supervisor Eugene Delgaudio from office will continue with a pre-trial hearing in Loudoun Circuit Court in June, after the supervisor and one of his former employees are deposed by attorneys in the coming weeks.

At a status conference Tuesday, Arlington County Commonwealth’s Attorney Theo Stamos and Charles King, Delgaudio’s attorney, told retired Arlington County Circuit Court Judge Paul Sheridan that the court could tentatively set a trial date at the June hearing. Sheridan said he would expect the attorneys to offer witness lists, evidence exhibits and an estimation of how long a trial might last.

The petition against Delgaudio (R-Sterling), which was signed by 686 voters in his district and filed in January, makes numerous allegations against the four-term supervisor — including “neglect of duty,” “misuse of office” and a lack of distinction between the work of his public office and his nonprofit organization, Public Advocate of the United States, which campaigns against gay rights. The accusations stem from evidence that surfaced during a criminal investigation of Delgaudio, launched after one of his former staff aides, Donna Mateer, complained that the supervisor used his public office for his political benefit.

The investigation, led by Stamos, did not lead to an indictment. But a report released by the grand jury detailed numerous alleged problems with Delgaudio’s conduct in office, and suggested that the supervisor dodged criminal charges in part because Virginia law governing the use of public assets only applied to full-time employees.

Delgaudio has consistently denied any wrongdoing.

The Sterling supervisor, who was not questioned by Stamos or law enforcement during the criminal investigation, is scheduled to be deposed May 20. Mateer’s deposition will be held May 13. Both proceedings will take place at Loudoun County Circuit Court and are closed to the public, Sheridan said.

Mateer’s lawyer, former Loudoun County supervisor Stevens Miller, expressed concern Tuesday that prosecutors had not sought records that might substantiate Mateer’s claims — including the allegation that she made hundreds of phone calls to set up fundraising meetings for the supervisor.

“I don’t have subpoena power, so I can’t ask for the records that I know are out there that would support what she has to say,” Miller told Sheridan. “My client has a right to know whether or not she’s on her own.”

Stamos said she had not been asked by Miller to issue a subpoena for relevant records, and said she was open to hearing any insight he might have on the case.

“I’m happy to have any aid from him,” Stamos said. “I am eager to meet with him and hear what he has to say about how we can get to the right outcome in this matter.”

Sheridan also told Miller that if Stamos should deny a request to issue a subpoena, Miller could bring it before the court for consideration.

The case is scheduled to return to court June 24 at 11 a.m. for a pre-trial status hearing.

Caitlin Gibson is a local news and features writer for The Washington Post.
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