Stetler
Stetler
A district judge in March will determine whether there's enough evidence for former state Rep. Steve Stetler to stand trial in Dauphin County Court.

A preliminary hearing for Stetler, the state's former Revenue secretary, was postponed from Christmas Eve until March 15 at 9 a.m., according to online court records.

District Judge William C. Wenner said he expected a continuance when he was arraigning Stetler earlier this month on charges that Stetler misused public funds and state employees for legislative campaigns.

Stetler was one of three people charged in the latest round of Attorney General Tom Corbett's so-called "Bonusgate" investigation.

Preliminary hearings were also pushed back for the two other defendants charged at the same time as Stetler. Rep. Bill DeWeese, D-Greene, and DeWeese aide Sharon Rodavich will go before Wenner March. 16.

When asked about the postponement of Stetler's hearing, Corbett spokesman Kevin Harley said "it's my understanding that's when the DJ (district judge) set it."

Stetler, DeWeese and Rodavich are each facing up to 40 years in prison and $85,000 in fines. Each faces four charges related to theft, one count of criminal conspiracy and one count of conflict of interest.

Stetler resigned as the state's revenue secretary in mid-December only hours before Attorney General Tom Corbett held a news conference announcing the charges in the latest round of the "Bonusgate" investigation.

The charges stem from Stetler's alleged activities after he became leader of the House Democratic Campaign Committee in 2002. The campaign committee is the privately funded political arm of the House Democratic Caucus, which is supported by taxpayers.

The charges are not related to his term as the state's revenue secretary.

Stetler and his attorney could not be reached for comment.