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Rain says she’ll press on with probe despite judge’s order

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CANTON — St. Lawrence County District Attorney Mary E. Rain said Wednesday that a judge’s order to stop investigating county officials pending a decision on whether to name a special prosecutor does not mean she must halt her probe.

Ms. Rain said she did not believe an order from Administrative Judge Vito C. Caruso relieves county officials “from their obligation to bring forward the records subpoenaed for the July 29th grand jury,” she was quoted as telling North Country Now. She added that “an elected district attorney cannot relinquish or assign his/her duties by law to a special DA, and can only be removed from conducting a constitutionally embodied grand jury investigation under rare circumstances, none of which apply here.”

Ms. Rain has not returned multiple Northern New York Newspapers calls for comment.

Judge Caruso’s order Tuesday barred Ms. Rain “from taking any action in furtherance of any grand jury proceeding,” and “from any action in furtherance of an investigation of misconduct, nonfeasance and neglect in public office concerning the failure to timely file a Victims Service Grant Application...”

Ms. Rain is convening a grand jury to investigate why the county failed to apply for a five-year grant totaling $500,000 that has paid for two victim advocate positions in the district attorney’s office. She also contends that forfeiture funds were used illegally.

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