Ex-Diven aide gets probation
The former chief of staff to former state Rep. Michael Diven, charged with forging dead people's names on election petitions, was ordered today to serve a year of probation.
Debora Lynn Romaniello, 51, of Brookline, is accused of forging the names of eight people - at least five of whom are dead - on nominating petitions for the Brookline Republican.
Allegheny County Common Pleas Judge Robert C. Gallo granted Romaniello accelerated rehabilitative disposition, a type of probation for first-time offenders whose arrest records can be expunged when they complete the terms and conditions set forth by the judge. In addition to probation, Romaniello was ordered to pay $719 in court costs, complete 100 hours of community service and abstain from using drugs and alcohol.
Romaniello was charged July 28 with unsworn falsification to authorities, false signatures and statements in nomination petitions, perjury in the election code and false swearing.
Democrat Chelsa Wagner defeated Diven in the November election for the 22nd District.