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Solicitation charges dropped against Maroney

A special prosecutor from Wood County has dropped misdemeanor solicitation charges against W.Va. Sen. Mike Maroney due to lack of evidence, bringing to an end a 19-month ordeal that included allegations that the Marshall County charges were politically motivated.

It was in August 2019 that Glen Dale Police arrested Maroney, a Republican lawmaker from Glen Dale and also a medical doctor, after he was implicated along with seven other men in a prostitution ring. Maroney’s case languished for more than a year in Marshall County Magistrate Court, with delays pushing the trial through his re-election campaign.

Maroney, silent for months on the matter, late last year blasted the Marshall County Prosecutor’s Office and former prosecutor Rhonda Wade for delaying his day in court, calling her actions and those of her office politically motivated.

A special prosecutor was appointed following the November election of Joe Canestraro as prosecutor — Canestraro had campaigned for Maroney’s opponent in the general election — and that prosecutor now has dropped the charges.

“Last week the special prosecutor dropped all charges against me citing the lack of evidence to substantiate the charges,” Maroney wrote in a statement issued to The Intelligencer. “I thank the special prosecutor for his professionalism and integrity.

“My earlier statement suggesting politically motivated, unjust charges by the former Marshall County prosecutor has now been validated. This brings closure to an injustice that has had an enormous negative impact on me and my family.

The damage that was done to me will never be completely erased but the healing has now begun. Many questions remain and from my standpoint, this is not over as I will proceed to find those answers.”

The Marshall County Prosecutor’s Office Tuesday confirmed the dropped charges.

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