Pa. attorney general says caseload is at all-time high

May 20, 2012|By JENNIFER FITCH |
  • Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda L. Kelly recieves an honorary degree from Wilson College president Barbara Mistick Sunday before giving the commencement adress to the Class of 2012 during the 142nd annual commencement at the college in Chambersburg.
By Colleen McGrath/Staff Photographer

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. — Linda L. Kelly can now add “commencement speaker” to her long résumé, which includes 30 years as a prosecutor, assistant district attorney and senior litigation counsel as Assistant U.S. Attorney.

Kelly, who is Pennsylvania’s attorney general, delivered her first graduation address Sunday when she spoke to Wilson College’s Class of 2012.

“I’d like them to take from my message that life is a journey, an unpredictable one,” Kelly said in an interview before the ceremony.

Gov. Tom Corbett nominated Kelly to the position he held before the 2010 gubernatorial election. She took the oath of office May 27, 2011.

“I was very honored that he asked me,” Kelly said.

Kelly said she was surprised by the “breadth and depth” of the attorney general’s office when she took the post. The office employs 700 lawyers, investigators and support staff.

The attorney general’s office is experiencing an all-time high for criminal and civil activity, according to Kelly.

“Some of the matters we’ve had to deal with are very significant,” said Kelly, who is from Pittsburgh.

The Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office became a frequent newsmaker last fall when it filed criminal charges against former Penn State defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky. He faces 52 counts related to alleged sexual abuse of children.

Kelly cited a gag order Sunday when saying she could not comment on the Sandusky situation.

The Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office changed some information and added details to some of the allegations against Sandusky in court documents filed Friday. The filings offer more specific information — at times graphically — about where and when the state alleges the abuse took place and what they charge Sandusky did to the 10 boys, the Associated Press reported.

Kelly said she wanted to focus on crimes against the elderly and children when she accepted the appointment. She is the second woman to serve as the state’s attorney general.

“The job presents the same challenges to a woman or a man,” Kelly said.

She and her husband, Paul, are the parents of a daughter, Kate, who recently graduated from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law.

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