A Maryland board will pay the former director of the state’s anticrime program nearly $200,000 for legal bills incurred from what some considered a politically motivated investigation engineered by Republicans, the Baltimore Sun reports. Stephen Amos, who headed the Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention under Democrat Parris N. Glendening, had been caught up in a corruption probe.
Former Gov. Robert Ehrlich, a Republican, made the investigation a campaign issue. In 2004, Amos was charged with misusing $6.3 million in federal grant money by allocating too much for administrative expenses. The charges were dropped and the indictment expunged, but the ordeal cost Amos his marriage, house, savings, and career. He has been largely unemployed since then. “We are dealing with one of the largest abuses of political power in the history of the state,” said Comptroller Peter Franchot, who voted to repay Amos $193,194, as allowed by state law. “It’s only a partial compensation. The mental anguish he and his family have gone through are really a black mark on the history of the state.” The payment to Amost was delayed because Ehrlich’s chief counsel, Jervis Finney, believed the charges were justified even though Amos was cleared of wrongdoing.