SC

#ProbeGate: Rick Quinn Pushes For Access To Documents

Suspended lawmaker seeks information to help prepare his defense …

Suspended South Carolina state representative Rick Quinn will appear in court next week in connection with the ongoing #ProbeGate investigation – a multi-jurisdictional inquiry into criminal corruption within state government.

News of the hearing was first reported by Andy Shain of The (Charleston, S.C.) Post and Courier.

Quinn – who is staring down a pair of misconduct in office charges – told us this week the hearing was related to “access to discovery.”

“The current discovery order won’t let us share (information) with expert witnesses or bring other lawyers in to consult,” Quinn told this news site on Friday.

By law, it is illegal to share information obtained via a statewide grand jury.  Literally, it’s a crime.

Quinn’s lawyers are hoping to receive permission to share certain documents as part of preparing their defense.

Do we see a problem with that?  No, not really.

Due process is due process, and to the extent there is a bias in regards to discovery questions – we believe it should go toward the defendant.

Earlier this year, S.C. circuit court judge Jocelyn Newman signed an order restricting access to information related to the investigation – limiting disclosure to Quinn and his three attorneys.

Sources close to Quinn told us that’s unfair.

They also argued that if S.C. first circuit solicitor David Pascoe fights against an amendment to this order, it would prove that the special prosecutor has it in for Quinn and his family.

“This is normally not even a hearing,” one Quinn ally said.  “It just happens. If Pascoe fights it (that’s) just another sign he’s dragging his feet and doesn’t want to go to trial.”

Quinn is accused of failing to report more than $4.5 million worth of payments received from a host of special interests between January 1999 and April of this year.  He is also accused of steering more than $270,000 in S.C. House “Republican” Caucus funds toward his father’s consulting firm, Richard Quinn and Associates.

Quinn has steadfastly maintained his innocence on all counts.

The 51-year-old lawmaker has represented S.C. House District 69 (map) since 2011.  Prior to that, he represented S.C. House District 71 (map) from 1989-2004 – serving as majority leader during the final five years of his tenure.

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