The next step was to interview Todd Gaddy and Ashley Baker, who had by then become husband and wife and still lived in Mount Morris, where Todd still worked at the pizza shop. After several attempts in October I did this early in November, 2006 with a private investigator named James Monroe, who was affiliated with Don Thompson’s office. Without going into too much detail at this point, suffice it to say that the Livingston County law enforcement apparatus learned that we were on to this evidence and mercilessly tampered with and intimidated these witnesses, culminating in Todd Gaddy’s arrest within a few weeks:
As all this was going on in the fall of 2006, the Appellate Division came down with its “non-decision” decision on the motion for summary disposition:
Now, although my motion for summary disposition was denied, so was Moran’s. This probably doesn’t make sense to a layman because the bottom line doesn’t really reflect it, but among lawyers in the litigation world, this order would be considered a major victory for me, because a special proceeding to prohibit a criminal prosecution would, 99.9% of the time, be denied outright and dismissed at the first available opportunity.
But of course they still won’t stay the criminal action in Livingston County Court, because they never do that. The success rate for criminal defendants seeking stays from the Appellate Division is 0%.
So in the immediate aftermath of this ruling what does Moran do? Does he reflect on his conduct and exercise self-restraint in view of the Appellate Division’s ruling implying that there is something wrong with what he is doing?
Nope. He tells Sephora that if she doesn’t plead guilty within three days that he will withdraw his plea offer. He pressures her into taking a plea. Which she does.
I mean, what else could she do?
It was an Alford plea, meaning that she could maintain her innocence, and she did. But it required her to go to prison for three years. She entered her plea on October 20, 2006. Sentencing was scheduled for January 3rd, 2007. She remained free on bail in the meantime, meaning she could remain home over the Christmas holidays with her family and her toddler.
Which brings me to a point worth mentioning. You might get the impression that I hate Tom Moran, but I don’t. He is dangerous as a prosecutor. He is, as I can easily demonstrate and perhaps will, a compulsive liar and lies to courts and opposing counsel whenever he feels it is necessary. But he is not cruel. Not in the internal sense that he will inflict harm gratuitously. He only inflicts as much harm as he feels is necessary to achieve his goal.