Former state Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin and her sister avoided prison time for their corruption convictions but were sentenced Tuesday to house arrest for what a judge called crimes of “arrogance.”
Although Allegheny County Judge Lester Nauhaus stopped short of incarcerating either woman, which is what prosecutors sought, he chided Melvin in particular for her conceit and her claims that she had always tried to be a role model for her children.
“What kind of role model are you? These are felonies, this isn’t a parking ticket, and your children’s mother is a convicted felon,” Nauhaus told Melvin, a married mother of six.
Melvin was convicted of using her former court staff — and that of her sister, former state senator Jane Orie — on her political campaigns. She was sentenced to three years of house arrest followed by two years of probation.
Melvin’s third sister, Janine Orie, 58, was sentenced to one year of house arrest and two years of probation for the illegal campaigning, which she helped coordinate.