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Key witness faces cross in Pa. Justice Melvin case

February 20. 2013 4:04AM
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PITTSBURGH (AP) ?? A key witness who testified suspended state Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin tried to cover up alleged campaign corruption in the office of her sister, a former senator, faces cross-examination by the defense.

Jamie Pavlot was chief of staff for Melvin's sister, former state Sen. Jane Orie, when the Allegheny County district attorney began investigating in 2009 whether Orie and Melvin ?? then a Superior Court judge ?? were misusing their respective state-funded staffs to do campaign work.

Pavlot says Melvin told her in a phone call days after the investigation became known to remove any political documents from Melvin's 2009 Supreme Court campaign from files Pavlot took home from Orie's office.

Pavlot says she, instead, kept the files, gave them to her attorney and began cooperating with the government. She'll be questioned about that today.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

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