About: Tara Koval

Tara Koval has been an investigative journalist since 1999. She is also an outspoken advocate for judicial reform, especially within the Family Court system.

Recent Posts by Tara Koval

Scranton City Council addresses nonuniform pension investigation

Scranton City Council members heard several resident’s opinions Thursday evening, February 26, at the weekly city council meeting regarding the recent announcement that the PA Auditor General’s investigation is slated to begin Friday into whether six nonuniform city employees should have received hundreds of thousands of dollars in double pension benefits since 2002. Auditor General Eugene DePasquale is conducting the investigation independent of law enforcement; however, DePasquale stated earlier that he would turn over any criminal evidence that he may discover in the course of his investigation.

Read more

Custody for Cash: Shred ALL

In a phone interview that week, Browning clarified that the county intends to transfer all files to an electronic database; however, that program is “in its infancy,” he said. Browning further explained that while some files are shredded “in-house,” that decision depends on the size of the file and the amount of shredding required. According to Browning, all files are stored in a 1,000-square-foot room in the CYS office on the 4th floor of the Spruce Street Annex building. He also stated that nothing is to be shredded before it reaches the five-year storage mark.

Read more

Kaput(o) — Danielle Ross to spend the next year in prison

Federal Judge A. Richard Caputo sentenced former sole Lackawanna County Guardian ad Litem Danielle Ross to 12 months jail time and ordered restitution of $63,124 in his Wilkes-Barre courtroom on April 16. “I must impose just punishment and it must be a deterrent for others from committing a similar crime,” said Caputo. Ross pled guilty last December to attempted income tax evasion.

Read more

Custody for Cash: Disapp(H)earing acts

As the Custody for Cash saga continues and new information is brought forth, the Independent Gazette has discovered yet another issue worth investigating within the family court system. According to several sources, docket listings — and even entire dockets — are often incomplete or inaccurate. Items often vanish from the record, and even the records themselves seem to disappear.

Read more

Gag orders: Further evidence of an out-of-control judiciary?

A stream of testimonials continues to flow into the Independent Gazette from all over Pennsylvania and beyond regarding the abuse of judicial power rampant in family courts. In addition to verbal threats and intimidation, multiple sources claim the courts are issuing gag orders to guarantee silence in custody cases involving the physical and sexual abuse of children. Judges are forbidding both litigants and non-litigants alike from speaking not only to media, but even to their own family members.

Read more