Paul violates protection order

Former Erie County auditor spends night in jail
Courtney Astolfi
Apr 17, 2014
Former Erie County auditor Tom Paul spent the night in jail for allegedly violating a protection order his daughter filed against him.

Paul, 61, of the 100 block of Newberry Ave., was charged with violation of a protection order, a first-degree misdemeanor.

Paul called his 35-year-old daughter twice at about 9 p.m. Tuesday, according to an Erie County deputy’s report.

On the first call, his daughter answered the phone without checking who was calling and immediately hung up when she heard her father’s voice. The second call she let go to voicemail, and Paul allegedly left a message.

In that voicemail, which the daughter later played for deputies, Paul asked to speak with his grandson.

“The male continues that he has custody of (the boy) and wants to speak with him now. The male then states that he is aware of his protection order with (his daughter). The male states that if (his daughter) does not let him speak with (the boy) there will be ‘issues’” the report states.

Paul and his wife have custody of the teen, but his daughter told deputies Paul was well aware of the boy’s temporary livingarrangements with her, the report said.

When deputies confronted Paul with his daughter’s complaint Tuesday night, he said he didn’t know he wasn’t allowed to call her. The daughter contends both she and Paul were at court on Monday concerning the protection order, the report said.

In late March, Paul’s daughter applied for a protection order and made criminal allegations against Paul, with whom she and her son were living at the time.

She told Erie County deputies Paul inappropriately displayed and touched himself in front of her and the boy multiple times, Erie County Chief Deputy Jared Oliver said.

When detectives and social workers interviewed the teen, he said his mother’s allegations were false, Oliver said.

Paul also denied the allegations.

Deputies forwarded the case to assistant Erie County prosecutor Mary Ann Barylski. As there was no corroborating evidence of the allegations, no criminal charges were filed, Oliver said.

Nonetheless, the protection order was still valid when Paul allegedly called his daughter on Tuesday.

Deputies arrested him Tuesday night and took him to the Erie County jail, where he remained until late Wednesday morning.

Paul served as the Erie County auditor for several years until current auditor Rick Jeffrey bested him at the polls in November 2010.



Worked with Tom at Tsubaki and he is a great guy and family man. The daughter has always given this man a raft of



yes the daughter has SERIOUS issues and her father is not the problem.

yea right

sounds like she needs to be taken to the wood shed..and to grow up


The amount of damage one disturbed child can do to a family is unbelievable.


Sounds like a bunch of bull honkey donk to me


A real father will put himself through hell for his children.


.....only if they deserve it. Women do NOT know what it takes to be a real man! They just think they know!


How do you know what hell other family members went through?


I understand the he said/she said kind of thing but he admitted in the voice mail that he knew about the TPO and then when the deputies got there he said he didn't know he wasn't allowed to call her. Kind of a contradiction there - in my opinion anyway - so in knowing about it why take that chance? If you know that she's a problem child and has issues, why push her buttons intentionally? And I totally agree with all of you - especially YoMamma that a real father will do whatever for their kids, but I don't think that includes putting themselves in jail for something like this. But again that's just my opinion and I'm sure that I'm saying this wrong and not getting out what I want to say.


And both of you know that Mr. Paul has not already gone through hell for his daughter? Hmm thought so,


Stories like the above are exactly why some people don't respect the SR.

I have never met nor heard much about Mr Paul but the story is completely unnecessary and borderline libel in my opinion.

Why is it necessary to air out this guy's dirty laundry? He's not a public official any more, he was not charged with the crime he was initially accused of, and from what the other commenters are suggesting the accusations made against him are ridiculous.

the only conclusion I can come up with is that the SR is exercising it's recently typical tabloid style journalism to sell papers and rack up page views.

I'm all for strong journalism and keeping public officials in check but this is absurd

Matt Westerhold

Thanks for the comment MattDamon. A Register reporter collects information daily for the police blotter the Register publishes. This arrest would have been posted in the blotter unless the Register made an exception for Paul. It would not be appropriate to make such an exception. A blotter item inevitably would lead to questions about the circumstances of his arrest and it was determined the best way to properly report this incident was to provide the information from the sheriff's reports. A newspaper's job is to report the information it obtains, not withhold it, from readers. We try to stick with that approach. But good questions. Thanks.


I agree that making an exception for Mr Paul would not be appropriate and thats exactly why I commented because the writers/editors who contributed to the story clearly made an exception. To my understanding the police blotter gives a simple "play by play" of what happened when an individual in the city was arrested.

The exception for Mr Paul was made when it published unsubstantiated claims made by his daughter. How many other similar stories has the SR ran about protection order violations where it publishes the details of why a protection order was violated? I would guess 99% of protection order violations show up as a two line story in the police blotter. I the I think the details shared in this story certainly cross that line between newspaper and tabloid.

Why is the above story news? What benefit does the community gain by being made aware of the lawsuit and allegations made by the daughter?

There you go again

I agree with you, MattDamon. SR chose to exploit Mr. Paul and diminish the facts about the daughter's allegations. I don't know Mr. Paul but the story made him out to be a creepy criminal. Thanks goodness comments here clarified the state of his daughter's relationship with him. Biased reporting, in my opinion, just to sensationalize a story. Sad for SR.

Matt Westerhold

Thanks There you go. Does your comment mean you would decide to make an exception and not publish the item in the blotter, as some sort of consideration, or you would not answer questions from readers when they ask for more information if you did publish the item? The news article clearly states what is in the court and police documents, the specific information you suggest hasn't been reported. It's the court's job to ajudicate the conflicting information, not the newspaper's.

yea right

so the sr has turned into a gossip a new job..really you and the staff have no training what so ever..including that trigger happy picture taker..(can not and will NOT ever call him a photographer) your paper has always been one sided..


Oh no, I agree with Matt Westerhold on something...what is wrong with me... If it was just a blotter item then people would have assumed the worst, by taking the time to print an actual story they explained the entire story. Including how the rest of the family members disagree with the allegations the daughter placed against Mr. Paul.

I just wish that the entire 20 year story could be printed here so that people really knew what has been going on. Mr. and Mrs. Paul should be commended for trying and not giving up on their daughter.

Thank you to the SR for telling as much of the story as you could.


You're right MrSandusky.


People want to read news until it reflects badly on themselves or their friends.

Keep reporting the news, SR. Keep it factual, complete, and objective; and save opinions for the editorial page.




@there you go again....I don't see any biased reporting here at all. Sorry to disagree with you. For once, I see both sides being reported with what apparently seems to be BOTH sides equally explained. The father had a Protection order which he violated and was jailed for violating and the daughter apparently got it by lying to a judge and prosecutor. It remains to be seen if she gets charged for that. That is pretty fair to both sides if you ask me. I don't know any of the parties involved so I have a pretty removed view of this...not knowing anyone involved and from what I read, this was a fair article. If you don't want your name in the paper or an article written about you (as a past public figure) then don't break the law. It's pretty straight forward. Sorry....they are just as fair game as anyone else who does something this silly. Breaking a restraining order is just plain dumb. And being a past public official he should have known better. Don't blame the news media for doing what they get paid to do. It isn't their fault. It's their job.


Is crime no longer news?

Julie R.

If the allegation his daughter made is false - and according to his grandson it is - that lady is pure evil to make up something like that.

That said, doesn't Mr. Paul now work in the Erie County Clerk of Court office?


If the allegation made by the daughter against her father is false (and the grand son confirms that it is false)then the daughter is the one who ought to be sitting in jail charged with the crime of falsification.

Why isn't she facing charges? There is enough evidence in this story (two witnesses claim she made a false statement to incriminate another in a crime) to charge her.
See subsection (A)(2)
This is a serious miscarriage of justice and Baxter's office owes the community an explanation for the office's failure to charge the daughter. Kudos to the SR for publicizing the information that demonstrates Mr. Paul is the actual victim here.


Give them time. Perhaps Baxter hasn't had time to do so yet. It seems to me that they can't just flip a switch down there and press that charge without being given some time to do so. Didn't this just happen? I would bet she DOES get charged given the situation now.


LOL, seriously Baxter can pick up a phone a direct a sheriff deputy to charge someone with a signature on a criminal complaint in Municipal Court. It takes maybe ten minutes.


double post


No he either resigned or was asked to resign or fired from the Clerk of Courts.


Perhaps the SR should put this in the print paper to inform those who don't have the online edition. What say you, Matt?


Mr. Paul has not been acting rationally for some time. Allegations true or false, he had a CPO and should not have contacted her. The is much more to this story than meets the eye.