Friday, June 13, 2008

FOI To Chinni: Don't Pull That Maneuver Again


Chinni: The Billing Records Are / Will Be In The Mail …

Upon Compliance With Commission Order,
Those Records Should Be Available For Anyone

Watch For New Developments
In The Famous Douche Bag Case,
aka Doninger V. Schwartz & Niehoff, et al …

The Cool Justice Report
June 13, 2008

EDITOR'S NOTE: This story is available for reprint courtesy of The Cool Justice Report,

HARTFORD -- A huge fine would have been great.

But, a stern warning from the Connecticut Freedom of Information Commission was as good as it got.

Commission Chairman Andrew O'Keefe, a highly-regarded Hartford lawyer, admonished attorney Christine Chinni Wednesday for her clumsy tap dance last year to sidetrack production of write-in ballots in a stolen election at Lewis Mills High School in Burlington.

O'Keefe warned Chinni not to repeat the maneuver in which she and former Superintendent Paula Schwartz initially denied the write-in ballots were available. A transcript and / or podcast of the warning and arguments about the case will be posted as they become available.

Tallies of the ballots showed Avery Doninger was elected as Secretary of the Class of 2008 at Lewis Mills. School bosses including Schwartz and Principal Karissa Niehoff refused to recognize the election results.

Doninger and other students sought redress of grievances against administrators last year after a battle of the bands called Jamfest was postponed a number of times and cancelled. They urged the public to speak up for them.

Schwartz rescheduled Jamfest after public pressure. A few weeks later, Schwartz's 36-year-old son trolled the Internet and found Doninger's personal blog post noting the event had been cancelled because of the douche bags in the central office.

Doninger was banned from running for office and school officials tampered with her disciplinary file under the direction of Chinni. Another student who wrote a blog post calling Schwartz a dirty whore received an award and was praised for her citizenship.

Schwartz refused to accept or acknowledge Doninger's written apology for her poor choice of words.

School officials refused to consider other options for punishing Doninger and now they face a trial in U.S. District Court.

Meanwhile, Chinni attempted to delay production of the uncensored billing records for her firm by another week. After discussion with the commission, she agreed to mail them by Monday, June 16, 2008. Those records are public documents and available for inspection by anyone. They should have been produced on Aug. 1, 2007.

Niehoff Suspended Without Pay For 2 Days

  • Freedom of Information Report

  • Douchebagarama, In Technicolor: aka The Actual Hearing For This FOI Case On CT-N

  • REGION 10 SCHOOL BOSSES On Agenda, CT FOI Commission June 11, 2008

    Anonymous said...

    Amazing! Just how do you manage to get access to this stuff? Where did you originally see Mr. Beitman's letter to Ms. Niehoff? Is this published somewhere else in the public domain?
    This website has always been interesting, now it is beginning to read like a sopa opera.

    Anonymous said...

    If you want to see a soap opera, you should look at Mr. Thibault's coverage of Enfield.

    He singlehandedly exposed the corruption, cronyism, malfeasance and mismanagement rampant under our former mayor. It was around this time last year that Mayor Cocoa Puffs announced that he wasn't running for reelection. His own party dumped him after a now-infamous Memorial Day incident at Enfield Shaw's, first reported here.

    But about the soap operas, keep in mind what they say about opera, "It ain't over 'til the fat lady sings."

    Anonymous said...

    I don't know, these school officials and their lawyer seem to think that sicne Judge Mark Kravitz found in their favor, the government has given its blessing to them lying. Or the government has annointed too above reproach to be accused of anything. I hardly think thats the case.

    But the FOIC has no excuse not to fine a LAWYER and now really raises questions about FOIC's refusal in general to order fines. I am tired of the excuses i hear out of FOIC for not fining. don't they have any respect for the FOI law they are entrusted to enforce?