Pennsylvania Turnpike: 11 disciplined over porn

AP News
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Posted: Nov 25, 2014 12:25 PM

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission officials said Tuesday the agency has disciplined 11 people for using its email system to forward and receive pornography.

A spokesman said the punishment ranged from suspension for the most serious violations to letters of reprimand.

Turnpike chief executive Mark Compton said no senior level employees were implicated in what he described as "an unfortunate but isolated incident."

"We sent a clear message to those involved, and they received it," Compton said in a release. "As a follow-up, we will undertake an effort to remind all turnpike employees of our email-use policy."

The action, taken after an investigation by the turnpike's internal compliance department, was first reported by the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

Turnpike spokesman Carl Defebo said Tuesday he was unsure what prompted the investigation or when the discipline was meted out.

The disclosure followed a similar but wider scandal at the attorney general's office, where dozens of employees were disciplined for exchanging emails with explicit content or pornographic images.

A Pennsylvania Supreme Court justice, Seamus McCaffery, abruptly retired in October after the court's chief justice disclosed McCaffery's participation in the attorney general's office emails.

Attorney General Kathleen Kane announced two weeks ago that four of her employees had been fired and 11 suspended without pay for their involvement in the email scandal. She said two others may still be fired, two quit before being disciplined and several others with limited involvement were given written reprimands or counseling.

She has said the existence of those emails became known as her office conducted its own review into how state prosecutors handled the Jerry Sandusky child molestation investigation.