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Official: Macejko should retain endorsement

Published: Fri, February 24, 2012 @ 12:09 a.m.

By Peter H. Milliken



City Prosecutor Jay Macejko should retain the endorsement of the Mahoning County Democratic Party for county prosecutor, said the party’s vice chairwoman.

A derogatory text message about President Barack Obama has been attributed to Macejko or one of his assistant prosecutors in documents released to the media by a supporter of Macejko’s opponent, incumbent prosecutor Paul J. Gains.

“At this point, we don’t see any evidence that he [Macejko] sent that message,” said Jaladah Aslam, party vice chairwoman.

Macejko has denied sending that message and said he never saw it until Feb. 13.

“I think it’s deplorable. I think it’s ridiculous. As an African-American, I’m extremely offended by that comment about our president,” Aslam said of the message.

Aslam, who also is president of the Youngstown-Warren Black Caucus, a local minority political group, said that caucus discussed the Obama message at a Tuesday meeting and decided to continue its endorsement of Macejko in the March 6 Democratic primary.

“Our position is that we stay where we are right now [concerning the endorsement of Macejko]. If, for some reason, any further evidence comes out, we will be convening,” she said of the caucus.

If Macejko turns out to be the author of the Obama message, the caucus “absolutely should and will” rescind its endorsement of Macejko. Gains is seeking a fifth-consecutive four-year term as county prosecutor.

The message was released from a court file in a lawsuit against Macejko and the city by Bassil Ally, an assistant city prosecutor, who alleged he was discriminated against based on his Muslim faith.

The city settled the suit by giving Ally a $110,000 lump sum and a $4,000 annual pay raise, and a federal judge found Ally suffered discrimination and retaliation based on his religion.

Besides the Obama text and the Ally lawsuit, another lawsuit against the city is looming large in the race for county prosecutor.

That suit, which seeks at least $50,000 in damages, was filed last April by Debra J. Byrd, a city law department secretary, against the city and its law director, Iris Torres-Guglucello, who has since retired.

In 21 WFMJ-TV’s Wednesday debate between the candidates, Gains said of Macejko: “He has been city prosecutor for six years. He supervises six employees. Two of those six have already filed suit against the city. One has gone to a $100,000 judgment on discrimination and retaliation, and the other is pending.”

Byrd’s lawsuit, which is pending before Judge R. Scott Krichbaum of Mahoning County Common Pleas Court, alleges city officials wouldn’t accommodate her work schedule while she was being treated for cancer because she is black.

Byrd also alleges the unfair treatment was in retaliation for her support of Ally. After she refused to sign an affidavit supporting the city against Ally, Byrd said she “experienced retaliation in the form of unwarranted complaints about her work and reprimands.”

Guglucello denied the city discriminated against Byrd.

Macejko is not named as a defendant in the Byrd lawsuit, and he is mentioned favorably within it as a supervisor who was willing to accommodate Byrd’s medical needs.

Guglucello, however, told Byrd she’d have to take part-time status or an unpaid leave of absence and lose her health-care benefits because she couldn’t work 40 hours every week, the lawsuit said.

The city, which had advanced sick time to at least three white employees in 2009, refused to advance it to Byrd, the suit said.

Byrd was put on part-time status and lost her health benefits in September 2009, but her full-time schedule and health benefits were reinstated early in 2010, the suit says.

While working parttime, Byrd had to pay for her own health insurance, the suit said.


1AtownAugie(892 comments)posted 4 years, 5 months ago

Yep, keep 'em line -- the party line. Such as with this parent: http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/news/...

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2WC(8 comments)posted 4 years, 5 months ago

Mr. Milliken...did you check your facts with Ms. Byrd?
I dont believe your article is accurate...perhaps you can touch base with her today and reprint the article tomorrow.

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3mishmash(333 comments)posted 4 years, 5 months ago

This writer rarely checks his facts ever. He just is very good with hitting his deadlines, tho.

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4AtownAugie(892 comments)posted 4 years, 5 months ago

Sounds like Jay needs a nickname. How about the name of a famous Democrat from the 60's, Bull Connor? Yep, "Bull Connor" Macejko -- has a certain flair to it. And perhaps a certain ring of truth.

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5Bman(151 comments)posted 4 years, 5 months ago

I am voting for Macejko!

I will keep this election about the issues: Jay is a real prosecutor and Gains is not. Gains ineptness is evident in every matter his office handles, and Jay is the first challenger that can stop it.

Gains' people are running absolutely scared. That's why the issue-deflection of mud slinging is ongoing, because Gains cannot talk about himself; unless he wants to discuss poor performance.

The fact that Mayor Jay Williams, Youngstown's first African American mayor, appointed Jay Macejko to represent both Mayor Williams and the citizens is evidence Jay's committment to represent all people fairly.

Gains forgets that, even after Macejko had his problems with the cry baby, under peforming Ally, Mayor Williams stuck by Macejko!

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6WC(8 comments)posted 4 years, 5 months ago

I think the answer is pretty clear. There is at least one person who knows the origin of that text....Attorney Hartup, who I am sure has been promised a future in the Mahoning County Prosecutors office should Macejko win. Attorney Hartup...did you send that text as Jay has inferred? Why is no one asking him...its a question that needs to be asked.

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7uptowngirl(139 comments)posted 4 years, 5 months ago

I do not believe that Ally deserved any accomodation based upon his religious worship requirements, nor do I believe that he was discrimated against. When you become a public servant, your job is 24/7 regardless of religious holidays, celebrations, etc. In The court calendar is set to carry out court business efficiently. If you accept a job in governement it should be a forgone conclusion that your service is expected when needed regardless of your religious beliefs. I am tired of these crybaby lawsuits. What is next--atheist lawsuits because they are forced to take off religious holidays?

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8ahCanfield(5 comments)posted 4 years, 5 months ago

Is anyone paying attention to the line above where Byrd said Macejko was NOT a part of the problem? That he was a good supervisor and tried his best to accommodate?

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9doubled(210 comments)posted 4 years, 5 months ago

Someone here said....."When you become a public servant, your job is 24/7 regardless of religious holidays, celebrations, etc..."

But don't ever expect to get paid for the extra work or to get paid like a private sector employee who's expected to work 24/7....and if you ever ask for a raise you should be fired b/c you're not a patriot.....(it's a tea party thing)

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10praxis95(51 comments)posted 4 years, 5 months ago

Prosecutors are assigned to a court, the judge controls the court and the courts schedule. The court sets a criminal case at a certain time, and your the prosecutor, your expected to be in court.

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11Billweaver480(62 comments)posted 4 years, 5 months ago

Read the documents and come to your own conclusion on if Jay is telling the truth!.


People just need to get on pacer and look at the evidence themselves.


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