Appeals Court Sides With Macungie Mayor In Police Dispute

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lehigh County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lehigh County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Macungie Mayor Rick Hoffman has scored a victory in a dispute with Lehigh County District Attorney Jim Martin over control of the borough’s police department, the latest chapter in a costly and acrimonious legal battle.

In a state Commonwealth Court opinion issued Thursday, a seven-judge panel upheld a series of decisions by Lehigh County Judge Michele A. Varricchio, who ruled that Hoffman is the borough’s chief law enforcement officer and that he is entitled to unrestricted access to the police station and its files.

Hoffman was declaring an “across-the-board” victory in a case the judges characterized as “testy litigation” of questionable value to the borough.  Martin called part of the decision pertaining to “sensitive” police records access a victory for his office.

“Once again, I’ve been proven right,” Hoffman said. “I just wish it wouldn’t have gone this far.

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