Bounding down the steps to the first floor, Mack, with a smile on his face, continued to ignore questions. Once outside, Mack gave one buoyant response:
“E-mail your questions,” he said, gripping the rear passenger door of his waiting city SUV, flashing a thumbs-up, and getting in.
As e-mailed, Wednesday, February 19, 2014, to firstname.lastname@example.org, with cc’s to email@example.com and MHERNANDEZTORRES@trentonnj.org:
Dear Mr. Mack:
Don’t you think it is a little late to rely on an insanity defense?
Your behavior since your conviction on all of the six criminal charges of which you were indicted and tried in District Court makes no sense to me, except in the context of a defense strategy that is kind of, you know, not going to work. Because your trial is over. You are guilty.
Do you think there is any possible outcome to your court hearing next week other than your removal from office?
Had you been convicted of a felony in a New Jersey court, your position as Mayor would have been automatically forfeited on the same day you were were found guilty. It’s only because of a bug in New Jersey law that this extra judicial process is required.
You will still lose your office, your salary, your pension, and any future public life in New Jersey.
Do you have any doubt this will be the inevitable outcome of this process?
Why did you show up at last night’s Council meeting? I guess you correctly figured that none of the “bewildered council members on the dais,” in the words of Trenton Times reporters Jenna Pizzi and Alex Zdan, would call you out for your appearance and shameful refusal to leave office before you are kicked out. They are, all of them, just as inexplicably intimidated by you in your last days as they were four years ago. For the life of me, I just cannot figure out why that is.
Wasn’t your departure last night a tad embarrassing? The Times reports “When approached by reporters, the mayor fled from the room and down a back stairwell.” Or is that kind of flight from the building second nature by now?
Don’t you think Judge Michael Shipp will take all this into account when you next appear before him at your sentencing?
Yes, this is your first conviction and all. But you were found guilty of some pretty serious crimes. In order to reduce your time in prison, I would suppose the judge would want to see some demonstration that you show some remorse for your actions, some actions that show that you realize what you have done and take some personal responsibility.
Don’t you think that your actions over the last two weeks – hanging on to your title by your fingertips, refusing to resign, insisting on your police-assigned official driver, generally acting like nothing has changed – may lead the judge to throw the book at you?
Why are you acting in ways that will probably extend your time in prison? Don’t you think your family will miss you during the extra months or years you will be kept from them?
Do you think these extra few weeks in office are worth it?
Has any of this made an impact on you? Do you know how badly you have betrayed yourself, your family and the people of the City of Trenton?