As Ms. Redden reported earlier this week, when Angie Casavecchia Ashens took over as public administrator, she discovered all records had been removed, and all computer files erased. Some of the paper documents were in possession of Assistant Jasper County Prosecuting Attorney John Podleski, who is a defendant along with Mrs. Hunter in lawsuits filed on behalf of Mrs. Hunter's former wards:
Lawsuits have been filed or are being filed raising allegations of overcharging the estates of county wards and other financial issues. Podleski is an assistant prosecutor and works for Dankelson.
Because of the association, we do not believe that Dankelson can oversee what day by day is becoming more and more questionable.
An outside audit is needed, but until records are produced that will be impossible. Dankelson must contact the attorney general’s office, explain the situation, and ask for an outside investigation.
As for Casavecchia, she should accept nothing less than past records on all the wards, and demand nothing less than a full accounting of the handling of their finances under her predecessor.
Dean Dankelson needs to recuse himself from this case immediately and bring in investigators from outside, just as the Globe editorial suggests. The longer he waits, the worse it looks for him and his office.