Stress Balls, Indeed!
On Monday, Jack Stollsteimer, Democratic party candidate for Delaware County District Attorney, called for an investigation into District Attorney Kat Copeland, saying: “DA Copeland has spent more than $75,000 in county funds on giveaway items branded with her name that have no legitimate law enforcement use. Fly-swatters, backscratchers, stress balls and nail files are traditionally used as giveaway items for political campaigns.”
Staff and volunteers of the Stollsteimer campaign searched public records and concluded that Copeland’s office billed the County for expenditures on items which would be used for promotion of the D.A.’s reelection rather than for public protection or law enforcement. Stollsteimer contends that this was part of a plan to use asset forfeiture funds and public money to fund Copeland’s 2019 election campaign.
In response on Tuesday, Copeland campaign spokesperson Pete Peterson ridiculed the charges: “Stollsteimer is a hypocrite, and his wild accusations are a political stunt that has no merit. These items were selected based on feedback from seniors about which items they would be most likely to use and keep. The phone numbers on these items go directly to detectives who serve on the DA’s Senior Fraud Prevention Team. The goal was to ensure seniors had readily accessible contact information for the District Attorney’s Office to report if they ever became a victim of elder fraud or abuse.”
Peterson leveled his own accusations: “Before Jack Stollsteimer criticizes legitimate expenditures, he may want to reimburse Pennsylvania taxpayers for the thousands of dollars we paid last year to send him to Disney World Resorts for five-days to attend an ‘educational’ program — just months before he stepped down from his politically appointed job in the state Treasurer’s Office.”
Welcome to Delco campaign season.