LETTER: Cordray responds -- BCI can't start a case

In his July 18 column, Mr. Westerhold criticized the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation (BCI) for not doing something that BCI, by law, is not permitted to do.
Jul 27, 2010


In his July 18 column, Mr. Westerhold criticized the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation (BCI) for not doing something that BCI, by law, is not permitted to do.

Mr. Westerhold says BCI should have unearthed corruption in Cuyahoga County over the past several years. But Ohio law does not permit BCI to initiate investigations into any matter unless specifically requested to do so by local law enforcement officials or by the governor. The legislature has barred such action in order to prevent the growth of a state police force, which has never been favored in Ohio. When BCI did receive such formal requests from the governor and local officials last year to investigate potential irregularities in real estate appraisals connected to the ongoing federal corruption investigation in Cuyahoga County, we immediately got involved, and our continuing investigation will help address and resolve those issues.

Additionally, Mr. Westerhold characterizes BCI's work inaccurately, ignoring the fact that in the past year the state crime labs have significantly reduced the number of pending cases. Tests are now typically completed within 45 days of being sent to the labs, which meets or exceeds generally accepted national standards. In a 2009 survey completed by Wright State University, 1,001 law enforcement officials were surveyed and 96 percent reported they were "satisfied" or "very satisfied" with BCI's communications on pending cases.

We are all ears about ways to improve our performance. BCI staffers are well trained and highly professional; they work hard to serve local law enforcement; and they do not deserve the unfounded criticism levied by Mr. Westerhold in his column.

Richard Cordray

Ohio Attorney General

Editor's note: The state's Organized Crime Task Force works out of the Ohio Attorney General's Office and has the full investigatory and subpoena powers of a peace officer in Ohio.




FINALLY****ignorance exposed!!!!

Woody Hayes

To Juliebeth R:

Before you get on here and hijack this, you're nuts.

Julie R.

Cordray's letter is misleading. He says that Mr. Westerhold said that the BCI should have unearthed corruption in Cuyahoga County over the past several years.

Westerhold did not say that. Westerhold instead wondered how the BCI ever missed all the massive corruption that has been going on in Cuyahoga County for decades that the FEDS have just uncovered in the last two years.   

Cordray then says when the BCI received formal requests last year from the governor and local officials to investigate potential irregularites in real estate appraisals connected to the ongoing federal corruption probe, we immediately got involved.

This also is misleading. The housing scandal is different from the other corruption. The housing scandal that the FEDS said was going on for 10-15 years involved crook realtors, title companies, appraisers, banks and other lending companies.

The other massive corruption involves Jimmy Dimora, attorneys and even Cuyahoga County judges that the FEDS have accused of fixing cases. Isn't this the investigation that Cordray has recused himself from,  stating there's a "conflict of interest?"

Julie R.

According to the Ohio Attorney General's office, they do not become involved in complaints against  public officials------according to them this is handled by the Disciplinary Counsel. So if this is true, why is the OAG involved in the DeWitt McDonald case trying to prevent him from getting a new trial? Why also have they requested that the BCI records pertaining to the 2001 investigation into the allegations made by a one Krista Harris be kept sealed? Somebody (Krista Harris) makes very serious allegations in 2001 that she was threatened by public officials to lie as the star witness in a murder trial that netted some guy a life sentence and they want to keep their investigation a secret?  Something sure doesn't smell right there.


To Woody:





Julie R.

So if I'm wrong, Pete and Woody, prove me wrong. Did Cordray recuse himself not from the Cuyahoga County housing scandal but from the massive corruption probe involving that super crook Jimmy Dimora, Frank Russo, attorneys, judges, etc. etc. etc.,  or did he not? According to the angry comments on cleveland.com he did. So if he didn't prove it and I will admit I'm wrong.


I am sooo glad that Julie R is sooo well informed. It must be nice to have all that time on your hands.

 I personally think Westerhold finally got his comeuppance and really wish he would get broomed. How can any self-respecting managing editor put out a paper with so many mistakes. A week ago Sunday there were two pages that were blank, today, in the story about the Bellevue voyeur, underneath the picture, it says "name", what gives with all the misspelling and incorrect grammer. I mean in addition to all the other stuff.

Julie R.

I personally found it odd that Cordray even responded to Westerhold's story. Does he respond to all criticisms? Also, does this mean he subscribes to the Sandusky Register?

Woody Hayes

You mean your award winning newspaper that identifyed the Ottawa County Sheriff's department who shot and killed the Jones kid in Fremont? That paper? I think he wouldn't use the "Ragster" even as bird cage paper.


You are nuts


yep****it's another swiss****OMG an' just as air-headed.

Julie R.

Ohio has a lot of problems going on so maybe it's time for Cordray to get his priorities straight.  


Julie R....the AG's office is actually investigating Dimora, Russo, et al in Cuyahoga County.

See here: http://blog.cleveland.com/metro/2009/09/ohio_attorney_general_agrees_t.html.  This was last September.....where have you been?!?!?

Please admit you're wrong now.  Thank you.

Julie R.

Sorry, but according to the angry comments on cleveland.com Cordray has since recused himself from the Cuyahoga County corruption probe stating conflict of interest........so you might want to take it up with the Cuyahoga County taxpayers!


I feel bad for the people of Cuyahoga County. The Democrats in charge robbed them blind for years.


OY!!! Cordray, another so called legal expert. Cordray states "Ohio law does not permit BCI to initiate investigations into any matter unless specifically requested to do so by local law enforcement officials or by the governor." OY Cordray! Please state or show the Ohio law to back up your statement. Inquiring minds want to know. Cordray a Democrat. The crooks in Cleveland all Democrats. I wonder what Cordray would do if Dimora and Russo were Repukes? When these so called legal experts say that an investigation is against Ohio law, the least that they could do is cite the law. 


Look what I found on the Plain Dealer website. http://blog.cleveland.com/metro/2009/09/state_senator_demands_prosecut.html

CLEVELAND, Ohio — A Northeast Ohio legislator, watching a public corruption probe unfurl one indictment at a time, slammed Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Bill Mason and Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray this week for not prosecuting the public employees who already have admitted their guilt.

Republican State Sen. Tim Grendell wrote letters Wednesday to Mason and Cordray, arguing that the state should be working in tandem with federal prosecutors to ferret out corruption in Cuyahoga County. Mason and Cordray are Democrats.

Julie R.

That Cuyahoga County prosecutor Bill Mason certainly does have a lot of enemies in Cleveland. Even the clown Cuyahoga County Judge Shirley Saffold ( "lawmiss") called him a joke and told how he randomly allows his friends to violate the law. Hasn't Mason also handled cases in Erie County as a special prosecutor? Seems like I read somewhere he was either involved in the Elsebeth Baumgartner case or the case against Krista Harris.


This is what happens when people keep electing Democrats. The whole entire party is nothing but a bunch of crooks who watch out for each others backsides



Dimora-Democrat (and former head of the party in Cuyahoga County)

F. Russo-Democrat

The whole party is corrupt. Thieves every one of them

brutus smith


Robert William "Bob" Ney (born July 5, 1954) is an American politician from the U.S. state of Ohio. A Republican, Ney represented Ohio's 18th congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1995 until November 3, 2006, when he resigned. Ney's resignation took place after he pled guilty to charges of conspiracy and making false statements in relation to the Jack Abramoff Indian lobbying scandal.

Ney's best known Congressional work was on the election reform efforts founded in the wake of the confused 2000 voting in Florida, and his support and backing for the "Stand Up For Steel" crusade and resulting laws. From 2001 to 2006, Ney was Chairman of the House Administration Committee. As chair of that committee, he oversaw operations in the Capitol complex and was sometimes known as the "Mayor of Capitol Hill". Ney also gained notoriety when he mandated, as Chairman of the House Administration Committee, that "french fries" be renamed "freedom fries" on House of Representatives food service menus, to indicate displeasure with France's lack of support for the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Before he pled guilty, Ney was identified in the guilty pleas of Jack Abramoff, former Tom DeLay deputy chief of staff Tony Rudy, former DeLay press secretaryMichael Scanlon and former Ney chief of staff Neil Volz for receiving lavish gifts in exchange for political favors.

On May 18, 2006, the House Ethics Committee announced an investigation into bribery allegations against Ney, and on August 7, 2006, Ney announced that he was withdrawing from the 2006 election race.

On September 15, 2006, the Justice Department filed Ney's guilty pleas to a charge of conspiracy to defraud the United States and to a charge of falsifying financial disclosure forms. Both charges are related to actions taken on behalf of Abramoff's clients in exchange for bribes, as well as separate actions taken on behalf of a foreign businessman in exchange for over $50,000 in gambling sprees at foreign private casinos.[1] Ney is the first member of Congress to admit to criminal charges in the Abramoff investigation, which has focused on the actions of several current and former Republican lawmakers who had been close to the former lobbyist.[2] Ney resigned from the House of Representatives on November 3, 2006.[3] He was sentenced to 30 months in prison.[4] He was released on August 15, 2008 after serving 17 month


brutus smith

By Dan Balz

Washington Post Staff Writer 
Friday, August 19, 2005


Ohio Gov. Bob Taft (R) yesterday pleaded no contest to charges that he violated state ethics laws, becoming the first governor in the state's history convicted of a crime and providing powerful ammunition to Democrats seeking to break the Republican Party's dominance in a critical swing state.

brutus smith


Thomas W. Noe (July 1954–) is an Ohio Republican party fundraiser and activist, guilty of money laundering for the 2004 Bush-Cheney campaign and of theft and corruption in the "Coingate scandal". A longtime resident of Toledo, Ohio[1] Noe is a former member of the Ohio government in the United States and has had an impressive array of jobs and positions within the government of Ohio and even the federal government. He was also a prominent Republican party fundraiser and was actively involved in politics, serving as chairman of the 2004 Bush-Cheney election campaign in Northwest Ohio and a former chairman of the Lucas County Republican party, also in Ohio. Apart from his political activities Noe was also an avid coin dealer and owned various coin dealing companies, such as Capital Coin and Vintage Coins & Collectibles, as well as their subsidiaries.

Thomas Noe is a Bush Pioneer fundraiser and has been involved in or connected to many different political scandals, involving a wide range of scandals including elections, fundraising, government investment, and conflicts of interest. He was found guilty for his actions in the Coingate scandal, and, separately, pleaded guilty on charges in May 2006 of money laundering in connection to his political fundraising.



brutus smith

 So right wing pete, how many more do you want me to post before you acknowledge a criminal is a criminal no matter what party? You sure go against what you say about being an independant. Right wing pete.


OY Brutus, Some Repukes are crooks too. Repukes protect Repukes. OY Pete. You forgot to add  Gerold McFaul, Democrat who was a crooked sheriff from Cleveland. How did this crook ever get elected as sheriff? He had no LE experience. He was a pipefitter. He wanted to run for judge but he lacked a law degree. McFaul was convicted of crimes and sentenced to house arrest. McFaul and Mason allowed crime to breed in Cleveland. There sure are a lot of crooks in Cleveland wirh Irish and Italian surnames. No personal attack on the honest Irish and Italians which are of the majority.


Didn't that Baumgardner woman accuse Taft and Noe of being crooked long before they were charged? Repukes protect Repukes. Democrooks protect Democrooks and they cross party lines to protect both because both have dirt on each other.


Post as many as you want. No skin off my rear. But the fact remains that the cheating and stealing Democrats are just as crooked if not more so than the Republicans.

So why is it you only seem to bash the Republicans? Cleveland/Cuyahoga county is a prime example of what happens when the left gets in charge. The schools are in serious trouble while the Democratic Auditor gets kickbacks on property tax evaluations that impact those shool's finances. The liberals in charge there cheated the citizens of that county, plain and simple, for decades.

The Democrats cheated and stole from the people of Cuyhoga County so terribly that they had to completely change the method of goverment there. That  is what you get when the Democrats are in charge. Corruption plain and simple


I agree with Pete. There are far more crooks in the Democrook party than the Repukes. I like Republican State Sen. Tim Grendell. I think that he would make a good candidate for governor.


Watch it Sal, be carefull in agreeing with me. The Socialist Progressive Democrat on here will start calling you names as he has done others.

brutus smith

 So what Taft, Noe, Ney did wasn't corruption? And look what we got with Taft and the Repubs in charge of Ohio for 20 years. And right wing pete, you are always the one who singles out Dems. I just give you examples of Repubs. To me a criminal is a criminal. To you they are only a criminal if they are a Dem.


Now left wing nut Brutus, what I had said in a bunch of earlier comments on various stories was that politicians of both parties do not look out for the best interests of the citizens. You proceeded to label me a right winger, a tea partier, etc. So, what I have decided to do is to hammer on the Dumbocrats every chance the opportunity arises as you do with the Republicans. Gives me something to do while my system runs it's reports. And the corrupt liberals that they are gives me plenty of ammunition

Slam on the Republicans all you want Brutus ole boy, but I cannot seem to recall them being so corrupt a county actually had to throw out their goverment as Cuyahoga County had to do

brutus smith


Pete says

Post as many as you want. No skin off my rear. But the fact remains that the cheating and stealing Democrats are just as crooked if not more so than the Republicans

pete, maybe you should concentrate on what you write. ROFLMAO!