Wednesday, February 04, 2015

The LuLac Edition #2830, February 4th, 2015



Our “Write On Wednesday” logo.

The last year has been pretty tough for Luzerne County Councilman Rick Morelli. From his work on County Council to some shots he took regarding an incident of a personal nature Morelli has been attacked and vilified. The other day Morelli wrote a letter to the editor explaining his side of the story regarding accusations made against him by a former partner. Here is his letter today on Write On Wednesday. I publish this because Morelli has taken a beating on newspaper websites comments sections. He might have had that happen here to but I edit that crap or won’t put it up at all. Here’s his response to the incident that brought him so much unwarranted attention.
Six months ago, I was bound from discussing serious and outrageous accusations lobbed at me by a former partner of mine, Ms. Deana Pickett, by a temporary legal agreement. However, the six months are now up without incident, and I feel compelled to let the public know the truth and to clear my name, not only for myself but for my family.
I believe that the allegations of Ms. Pickett, which I have never admitted to and never will, were flung at me not out of any fear of abuse, but instead as an act of vengeance by her, seeking to take advantage of my position as a public official due to the fact that I was subpoenaed to testify against Ms. Pickett in her upcoming divorce proceeding.
On July 30 of this year, I was taken by surprise when I received a call from the press that I was being served with legal process from Ms. Pickett. I was shocked to hear this due to the fact that I had not spoken to or seen Ms. Pickett in almost three weeks. My immediate response was to fight in court until I quickly realized that the court hearing was going to turn into a media frenzy and also realized that fighting a personal issue in court while being in the public spotlight would only end up hurting other people who are close to me. Because of this decision, I could not, until now, fully respond with the facts.
Primarily, Ms. Pickett failed to mention in her allegations that after I didn’t have any contact with her for about three weeks, she reached out to me via text message on July 29 – the day before she filed. The following morning, July 30, I responded back via text that I had no idea what she was talking about, and that I wanted nothing to do with her. (Note: This text was given to the press in order to verify the facts of this statement.)
Coincidentally, just hours after I told her that I wanted nothing to do with her, Ms. Pickett filed a legal action against me. A person does not have to be Sherlock Holmes to see that after having absolutely zero communication or contact with her for about three weeks, after I told her I wanted nothing to do with her, then and only then, does she decide to make these ridiculous allegations that she was afraid of me. One has to ask, if she was so afraid of me, why would she reach out to me after almost three weeks of no contact whatsoever?
Ms. Pickett also alleged incidents of stalking. These claims are exaggerated and misleading. For example, on July 3, Ms Pickett alleged that I stalked her at the public store. What she failed to mention in her allegations is that I was in the store first. The cameras in the store prove it!
Ms. Pickett and her attorney were adamant that I could not speak to the media during the term the agreement was in place. My contacts in the legal field inform me that such a gag order is extremely rare in matters such as this. Her insistence that I refrain from telling my side of the incident bolsters my belief that Ms. Pickett’s intentions were to silence and shame me in an effort to keep from testifying against her – which I did on Sept. 15.
Although I’m an elected official, I am a human being first. I take a lot of pride in being a public servant and do my best to be the best person I could be along with being a great father to my son. I realize I have made personal mistakes and have hurt people close to me with my decisions, which I regret and am sorry for. To me, life is not about what happens in a situation but how you handle the situation. I could have let this matter just hang out there; however, I could not rest knowing that these untrue and exaggerated allegations would go unanswered.

Richard Morelli
Member, Luzerne County Council
Sugarloaf Township


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