The massive host committee for an upcoming fundraiser for Democratic state Sen. Maria Sachs includes State Attorney Dave Aronberg and a man being prosecuted by Arongberg’s office, Democratic activist Clarence “Shahid” Freeman, who has pleaded not guilty to charges he tried to blackmail Schools Superintendent Wayne Gent last year.
Aronberg supports Sachs and agreed to be on the host committee, but wasn’t involved in choosing who else would be on the list of nearly 100 Sachs backers, said Aronberg spokesman Mike Edmondson.
“We’re not the ones that put together those committees, the candidates do,” said Edmondson, who said there’s no reason for Aronberg to remove himself from the host committee.Sachs, an attorney, represented Freeman when he was charged with misdemeanor battery for a 2009 incident in which a woman accused him of grabbing her breast and buttocks.
Freeman pleaded not guilty in that case. Charges were dropped in 2011 after Freeman completed the terms of an agreement, according to court records. Details of that agreement are not included in court files.
Sachs defended her association with Freeman last year after he attended her ceremonial swearing-in a few weeks after the latest charges were filed.
“For 30 years I’ve been in criminal justice and I believe in our criminal justice system. I believe in the Constitution and everybody’s presumed innocence. I’ve lived that as well as believed it,” Sachs said at the time.