TROY, N.Y. – Not guilty on 61 counts. That's the verdict reached by jurors Friday for Rensselaer County Elections Commissioner, Edward McDonough.
This is the second time McDonough has been on trial, the first was declared a mis-trial in March.
McDonough stood trial by himself this time, but that was not the case back in January when he was tried with former Troy city councilman Michael LoPorto, who was also acquitted in his own separate trial this year.
LoPorto calls this past year a terrible injustice.
“It's like re-living the same thing over again, and innocent people should not go that way,” he says. “You live through this and your family goes through this and your kids go through this. Nobody should go through this innocent.”
LoPorto says every trial was a huge waste of taxpayer money.
McDonough's attorney, Brian Premo echoed those words in a phone interview.
“The cost to the county was astronomic and it was an abomination from the beginning and it should never happened,” says Premo.
Premo says his client was facing 62 counts of a combination of criminal possession of a forged instrument and forgery.
Premo says a plea deal was never an option.
“I made it clear from the beginning that my client would not accept the scapegoat role,” he says. “He was going to defend himself and seek the truth and seek justice and that's what he did.”