Judge rules county must pay $35K for Delgaudio legal fees
Sheridan in June dismissed the recall petition against Delgaudio, granting the request of Arlington Commonwealth's Attorney Theo Stamos, a Democrat who took on the case after Loudoun's commonwealth's attorney, a Republican, was recused to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest.
Sheridan also determined July 25 the proceedings and testimony from the 2013 special grand jury investigation into Delgaudio's office will remain sealed. The grand jury was looking into allegations that Delgaudio misused public assets -- claims that played a large role in the recall effort by nearly 700 of the supervisor's Sterling constituents.
Speaking from the bench, Sheridan noted the fee requested from Delgaudio's attorney, Charles King, seemed low. The judge implied King likely could have billed the county a greater amount.
The roughly $35,000, Sheridan said, was a "modest" and "reasonable" request from King.
In a prepared statement before the July hearing, King said: "I've been asked: Why can't the petitioners, not the taxpayers, be ordered to pay Supervisor Delgaudio's legal fees? The answer is the Virginia Code grants immunity to the signers of a removal petition from being ordered to pay fees. By statute, the body in which the official serves must pay any fees ordered."
Sheridan's decision to dismiss the case and have the county pay Delgaudio's lawyer appears to conclude the legal battle against Delgaudio involving allegations he misused county resources. The allegations against the conservative Delgaudio, which were first made in early 2012, led to to the months-long special grand jury investigation and a public censuring of Delgaudio by his colleagues on the board.
First elected to the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors in 1999, Delgaudio has indicated he will seek a fifth term in 2015.
Read past coverage:
-"Dismissed: Recall effort against Delgaudio tossed out" -- June 24
-"Delgaudio regains control of $120K Sterling District budget" -- July 17