Kraynak trial set for next week
SUNBURY - A bench trial for Dr. Raymond J. Kraynak will be held next week because Northumberland County Judge Charles H. Saylor has denied four of the five discovery evidence requests contained in a motion filed by the defendant's attorney.
Kraynak, 56, of Kulpmont, is charged by Coal Township Patrolman Matthew Henrich with one count of driving under the influence of alcohol in connection with a May 26, 2012, sobriety checkpoint along Route 61 in the eastern end of Coal Township.
He is scheduled for a bench trial before Saylor at 9:15 a.m. Friday, Aug. 30.
During a hearing Monday afternoon, Saylor denied requests by Attorney Eric Prock of Pottsville for a list of all payments made by any state or federal agency to Coal Township police department and/or Coal Township in regard to any DUI-related activities or projects, copies of affidavits of probable cause filed by Henrich in regard to DUI arrests he made prior to May 26, 2012, a copy of all PennDOT sobriety checkpoint training certificates for each officer involved with the checkpoint, and a list of all overtime pay, grants and bonuses for a three-year period to determine if the checkpoint was properly funded and authorized by the North Central Highway Safety Network or some other agency.
The judge granted Prock's request for the commonwealth to provide a copy of the conditions of the agreement between Coal Township police and North Central Highway Safety Network to conduct the checkpoint. The commonwealth had previously provided the defense with an unsigned copy of the agreement. Saylor ordered the commonwealth to provide the defense with a signed copy within seven days.
Assistant District Attorney Michael Toomey opposed all the requests, claiming they are irrelevant or not mandatory for the preparation of the trial. He told the judge, "They are overly burdensome for us to provide."
Saylor said an argument raised by the defense over the legality of the checkpoint will be considered at trial.
Prock submitted his motions to the court following an Aug. 9 pre-trial conference.
Prock is a law partner of Pottsville lawyer Frederick Fanelli, who represents Kraynak. The doctor, who is also a member of the Mount Carmel Area School Board, was initially represented by Attorney James Zurick of Shamokin.
At a February hearing before Judge William H. Wiest, Zurick argued that Coal Township police did not have probable cause to charge his client with driving under the influence of alcohol. Zurick claimed the checkpoint was illegal and said the defendant was the only person charged with DUI during the checkpoint.
On April 17, Wiest denied Zurick's request to suppress evidence.
Kraynak, a practicing physician with offices in Ashland, Mount Carmel and Shamokin, remains free on his own recognizance.