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Leonardtown, MD- On Wednesday, September 30, 2020, former St. Mary’s County Deputy State’s Attorney Jaymi Sterling abruptly announced her resignation after reporting alleged questionable financial and personnel decisions at the St. Mary’s County States Attorney’s Office under Mr. Richard Fritz.
“For the last nine and a half years, I had the distinct honor to serve the citizens of St. Mary’s County as an Assistant State’s Attorney, Senior Assistant State’s Attorney, Chief of Staff and Deputy State’s Attorney. On Wednesday, September 30, 2020, I submitted my resignation from the office,” said Sterling.” In my most recent role as the Deputy State’s Attorney, I uncovered questionable financial and personnel practices. I took action to make sure these practices were reported to the appropriate authorities. In response, the State’s Attorney immediately demoted me for reporting these irregularities.”
The Southern Maryland Chronicle reached out to States Attorney Richard Fritz for comment. When he was asked to respond to the allegations, he stated,” My attorneys serve at my pleasure, quite simply she no longer serves at my pleasure as deputy state attorney. A series of bad decisions on her part caused me to take the action I did. What financial practices she is talking about I have no idea. As to the personnel matters, I cannot comment, however, her action on these matters, and staff supervision was the main reason for my actions. I would also state that when I told her I was going to run for reelection, all of this started, so I think she is probably driven by the desire for my job, rather than her concern for serving the people of this county.”
When asked about the allegations on how they were reported, Fritz stated,” She bypassed me as the department head by allowing grievances to be filed without my review. In addition to the treatment of my female staffers.”
The Chronicle continued by asking Mr. Fritz to elaborate on the treatment of staff he was claiming of Ms. Sterling,” It was the only time. Must be kept in mind formal grievances can be very serious on an employee’s employment record. I don’t really want to say anything other than it was concerning to me.”
The Southern Maryland Chronicle reached out to Ms. Sterling regarding the responses and she emphatically replied that she had” followed the H.R.”s protocols completely.”
The Chronicle has filed multiple Freedom of Information Act(FOIA) Requests with the County regarding the allegations and will continue to report on this story.