Claremore Daily Progress

Government

May 24, 2014

DA dismissive of remaining grand jury issues

(Continued)

CLAREMORE —

Singer denied the perjury accusation, saying it was made 18 months after he investigated the case in retribution for his criticism of Steidley. He filed a federal lawsuit against the DA and her top assistant in February of 2013 on the ground they defamed him and also violated his First Amendment right to free speech. Federal  District Judge Gregory Frizzell tossed the defamation claim but allowed the free speech issue to proceed to trial.

In a partial finding, the grand jury said the issues at stake “raise complex constitutional and due process issues” regarding Steidley’s handling of the Singer matter, but they did not amount to her falsely reporting a crime. 

It also said there was insufficient evidence to conclude that Singer’s conduct constituted perjury.

The grand jury said it would “issue a more comprehensive finding on these Giglio issues in a future interim report where they can receive the full discussion they merit.”

Steidley, in her email response to The Daily Progress, said she “committed no criminal acts and the grand jury confirmed this. I am sorry you are disappointed that I was not wrongfully charged in this obvious smear campaign you have greatly assisted with. None of (the) allegations ever had merit.”

Singer’s attorney, Chad Neuens, said the grand jury findings refuted Steidley’s claim that the police officer committed perjury in the sex abuse case. 

“We also appreciate the grand jury’s confirmation of the fact that the district attorney has used and continues to use her power to stamp out political opposition from law enforcement and other Rogers County citizens who criticize her,” said Neuens.

Despite the grand jury’s suggestion that Steidley work more professionally with the law enforcement community, her email to The Daily Progress three days after the grand jury report continued to blame police authorities and the paper for the complaints against her.

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