Indictment of Rensselaer Co. DA dismissed
Jun 12, 2018 8:00 am
Kenneth C. Crowe II is reporting for the Times Union Supreme Court Justice Jonathan D. Nichols of Columbia County June 11, dismissed the criminal indictment of Rensselaer County District Attorney Joel E. Abelove [AYY-bel-ahv]. Nichols concluded the state attorney general's office exceeded its investigatory authority and did not have the jurisdiction to prosecute the DA on charges of felony perjury. Abelove was accused of lying to a grand jury and mishandling the investigation of the fatal police shooting of unarmed DWI suspect Edson Thevenin in 2016. The indictment charged Abelove with holding back evidence from the grand jury that investigated the incident. He was also charged with unlawfully allowing the officer who fired the fatal shots to testify with immunity from prosecution when he appeared before the grand jury, and for lying when he appeared in front of a special grand jury investigating his conduct. Nichols' decision focused on the issue of jurisdiction and did not address the strength of the evidence presented in support the charges against the DA. Abelove told the Times Union he was relieved by the decision and said the judge did not give the attorney general's office permission to present the case again to a grand jury. Read the full story in the Times Union.