Jim Reams

Rockingham County Attorney Patricia Conway is facing a potential whistleblower’s lawsuit over her firing of a key witness in a state misconduct investigation.

The New Hampshire Union Leader reports county commissioners have received an offer to settle the matter financially instead of defending themselves from a lawsuit.

Conway insists her firing of assistant county attorney Jerome Blanchard just hours after being sworn into office was not payback.

Allegra Boverman / NHPR

  The NH House is backing a bill that seeks to remove a potential financial incentive for county prosecutors who pursue liquor law violations.

The bill is fallout from mismanagement in the office of former Rockingham County Attorney, Jim Reams. Among other things, the state accused Reams of misusing fees his office collected while prosecuting liquor violations. Reams said current law allowed him to collect and spend the liquor fines.

Joe Gratz / flickr, creative commons: https://www.flickr.com/photos/63126465@N00/117048243

  Former Rockingham County prosecutor Jerome Blanchard begins work Monday as a criminal defense attorney with Russman Law in Exeter.

Blanchard was a primary whistleblower in the state’s investigation into former Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams. Blanchard was later fired by Patricia Conway, a longtime prosecutor in Reams’ office who was elected County Attorney in November.

Jim Boffetti  from the state’s Attorney General’s office has stepped back into the role of interim Rockingham County Attorney for the second time in a year.

When the Attorney General’s office suspended Rockingham county attorney Jim Reams last November, Boffetti stepped in on an interim basis.  And now about a month after returning to his old job running the Consumer Protection and Antitrust Bureau, Boffetti is back in Reams’ vacated office.

New Hampshire officials say they have charged a Rockingham County prosecutor with drug possession.

  Two months after successfully fighting to get his job back, Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams has resigned.

Attorney general Joe Foster removed Reams from office in November with allegations of gender discrimination, financial mismanagement, and ethical violations.

But a Superior court judge reinstated Reams in April on a technicality. State and county officials still pursued an appeal to remove Reams.

Rockingham County Attorney's office

 

A New Hampshire county attorney who was suspended for five months as the attorney general's office investigated him on misconduct allegations is facing a new accusation.

Rockingham County Attorney's office

 

Suspended Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams will return to office on Wednesday, but his authority to make personnel decision will be limited.

Lawyers for Attorney General Joe Foster and Attorney Reams together crafted the agreement that allows the Reams to return to work. 

Foster suspended Reams from his elected post in November and opened an investigation. In March, the investigation concluded with allegations of sexual harassment, gender discrimination and misuse of public money. No criminal charges were made.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

The New Hampshire Supreme Court ruled Thursday that suspended Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams can return to office while the Attorney General appeals a lower court's finding that the suspension was unlawful. 

The Supreme Court denied the AG's request for a stay that would have kept Reams out of office until the appeal is argued.

Rockingham County Attorney's office

New Hampshire Attorney General Joe Foster has appealed to the state Supreme Court that he in fact had the authority to strip suspended Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams of his prosecutorial authority.

Rockingham County Attorney James Reams filed a petition challenging his suspension by Attorney General Joseph A. Foster. Reams alleged his November 6, 2013 suspension was illegal and sought that the court order his reinstatement. A judge reinstated Reams on Thursday, April 10.

Read the full text here:

Reams v Foster, Et Al. Order 4/10/14

Emily Corwin / NHPR

A New Hampshire judge has ruled that the continued suspension of Rockingham County attorney Jim Reams is illegal, and ordered his reinstatement.

Attorney General Joseph Foster suspended Reams’ power to prosecute in November, as the AG investigated allegations of sexual harassment and financial mismanagement.

www.rocka.net / Rockingham County Attorney's Office

A New Hampshire county attorney suspended since November is returning to court to ask for his job back.

Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams cites the Attorney General's statement last month that no criminal charges would be filed against him.

Attorney General Joseph Foster suspended Reams' power to prosecute Nov. 6 due to an investigation into alleged sexual harassment and financial mismanagement.

A Merrimack County Superior Court judge last week denied Reams' request for access to financial documents and a list of witnesses investigators interviewed.

www.rocka.net / Rockingham County Attorney's Office

The Attorney General's office has released its complaint for the removal of Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams.  

Citing interviews with former employees of the Rockingham County Attorney's Office, the 25-page redacted complaint alleges numerous cases of sexual harassment, pregnancy discrimination, retaliation and misuse of county funds dating back 14 years. 

www.rocka.net / Rockingham County Attorney's Office

 

Suspended Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams says he will not run for re-election this year.

Tom Reid, a deputy to suspended Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams, has resigned. Authorities suspended Reams and Reid in November, at the outset of a state and federal investigation into office operations and management.

Attorney General Joe Foster said Reid submitted his resignation Friday, several days after a third employee who had been placed on administrative leave resigned her position.

In a statement, Foster noted the deputy county attorney was not the target of the criminal investigation, and that there was no evidence he had engaged in criminal wrongdoing.

New Hampshire prosecutors are saying for the first time that their investigation into veteran Rockingham County attorney Jim Reams is criminal in nature.

Prosecutors are fighting Reams' motion to release details about the nature of the investigation and complaints they say have been filed against him.

The attorney general stripped Reams of his power to prosecute last month — at the outset of a joint state and federal investigation of his office.

Rockingham county attorney Jim Reams arrived in court ready to fight challenge his suspension. But Judge Richard McNamara said such arguments would have to wait for another day.

McNamara told Reams' lawyer he’d need to file a motion for declaratory judgment to challenge Attorney General Joe Fosters power to suspend him.

Outside the court room, Reams’ lawyer, Michael Ramsdell, told reporters the state has yet to supply sufficient grounds to strip an elected official of his authority.