The following letter was sent by Harford County State’s Attorney candidate Al Peisinger to opponent David Ryden. A copy was provided to The Dagger for publication:
I am writing to demand an apology from you, and that you resign from your taxpayer funded position with the Harford County government, amid your libelous and slanderous behavior and abuse of public trust.
Your campaign propaganda promotes an outright lie – that I prosecuted police officers in the Freddy Gray case. You make that statement despite the fact that all dockets reflect the actual prosecutors’ names, not mine. You make that statement having investigated the matter with the officers themselves and having been told by them that I did not prosecute them. You are willing to disregard what you know is true in the name of personal gain. That is not prosecutorial integrity.
The disregard of truth has no place in the State’s Attorney’s office. Such behavior is an abuse of authority and a frighteningly dangerous characteristic of someone vying to be the top prosecuting attorney in Harford County. Your unethical behavior disqualifies you from holding a public servant position. The taxpayers of this County deserve better. They also deserve to know the truth. I demand that you produce the support and evidence for your allegations against me. Show them transcripts in which I participated in the case you highlight. Show them a docket entry. You can’t. Your accusations are completely false. The community should recognize that if you are willing to make false accusations in your campaign, you are just as likely to make false accusations in elected office.
Mr. Ryden, you are aware of the truth with regard to my work in Baltimore City. After years of working in the State’s Attorney’s office, prosecuting some of the worst criminals in Maryland, I was briefly assigned to the Police Integrity and Public Trust Unit and tasked with gathering facts about the Freddie Gray incident.
In my pursuit of justice, I objected to the indictments being filed against the officers, which led to my removal from the case before the City prosecuted the officers. To be very clear, I was not involved in the prosecution of the officers, and any claim to the contrary is a bold- faced lie.
Therefore, I call on you to immediately resign your position with the Harford County government. Withdraw your candidacy from the State’s Attorney’s race. Moreover, I demand an apology to me, my family, the entire County, and a full retraction of the lies themselves. Finally, I put you on notice that I am taking the steps necessary to request an investigation of your behavior by the Attorney Grievance Commission, am sending you a cease and desist letter, and am exploring legal action against you.
Mr. Ryden, if your behavior towards me is what you do, just to try to get into office, you are a danger to every innocent, law abiding citizen. Voters be warned. We need a trustworthy State’s Attorney for Harford County who has experience and integrity. I have both.