Superior Court upheld the conviction Monday of former Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane's driver, who was found guilty of breaking a court order by surreptitiously reading colleagues' emails.
A Montgomery County judge convicted Patrick Reese in 2015 of contempt of court, finding that he violated a protective order by snooping on emails in an attempt to learn about a grand jury investigation of Kane.
Monday's ruling does not mean that Reese will begin his three- to six-month jail sentence. Deputy District Attorney Thomas McGoldrick said Reese's lawyer had informed him they will appeal to the state Supreme Court.
Reese, 49, of Dunmore, Pa. served as the chief of Kane's security detail. His lawyer, William Fetterhoff, did not immediately return a message left Monday.
Superior Court affirmed Reese's conviction after reviewing issues argued on appeal, including whether the protective order was valid, whether Reese received notice of it, and whether he violated it with wrongful intent. The court also affirmed that Judge William R. Carpenter, who issued the protective order, did not need to recuse himself from presiding over Reese's trial.
McGoldrick said he was pleased with the court's decision.
"We always believed our prosecution was a valid one and that Mr. Reese received a fair trial," McGoldrick said.
Reese, a former police chief in Dunmore and confidant to Kane, remained in his job after he was convicted and sentenced. After Kane resigned, her successor, Bruce Beemer, fired Reese.
Carpenter found Reese guilty after a two-day trial in 2015, at which prosecutors argued that he had searched private email servers in the Attorney General's Office at Kane's behest. Carpenter, who was overseeing the grand jury investigation into an illegal leak from Kane's office, had issued a protective order that barred employees in the office from accessing information about the investigation.