Former Officer Convicted Of Brutality Running For Democratic Committeeman

Former Officer Convicted Of Brutality Running For Democratic Committeeman


A former Ambridge Borough police sergeant convicted in the 2009 beating of a prisoner has submitted nominating petitions to run for a seat as Committeeman for the Democratic Party of Beaver County.

Richard Heitzenrater will appear on the May 20th ballot in a bid for Democratic Committeeman against Borough President Michael Mikulich.

Democratic Committee people serve 4 year terms to elect the party’s Chairman and vote to endorse candidates.

Heitzenrater was sentenced by a federal judge to serve 6 months in a halfway-house, 6 months on house arrest, and 6 months of probation for Civil Rights violations and destruction of evidence to cover up a 2009 beating of a man in police custody. Ambridge Borough settled a subsequent lawsuit filed by the man for a reported $150,000.

Following his sentence, Borough Council appointed Heitzenrater to the Ambridge Civil Service Commission which oversees the hiring of police officers for the town. The United States Department of Justice denied the Ambridge Borough Police Department a grant worth $200,000 last year explicitly because of Heitzenrater’s role on the Commission.

Heitzenrater had a failed run for a seat on Borough Council last year, and has beaten back calls for his resignation from the Civil Service Commission.

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About The Author

John Paul

John Paul is a Beaver County native and the founder of the Beaver Countian. He reports full-time for the site, specializing in investigative journalism with an emphasis on public corruption.


  1. Raven

    They just keep coming, don’t they? And their buddies and the straight-ticket voters escort them right into the Big Top, where they continue their sideshows to shock and amaze.

    1. Ya think

      Let’s get George Bush back in office, thank God we got Corbett as governor, to give those Texas gas companies tax breaks, privatize the lottery to Europe and let the middle eastern sell liquor out of 7/11.

      Yeah twenty investigators on veon who was a sleaze was worth it, as they only put one at that time of Sandusky investigation. Yeah pushing the republican agenda doesn’t happen. No politics in that party just clean message,

  2. user

    You people are confused: party affiliation doesn’t matter. These type of people do not belong in government. Heitzenrater is bad news for public office. The only place he should be working is in a soup kitchen.

  3. Nobama

    Just what the fuck is wrong with the Demon-crats in this county?! They are making the Nobama administration look like geniuses, which any normal person knows is an impossibility! 

  4. buzzkill

    Mike Mikulich is one of the good guys in Ambridge so of course other Democrats would run someone like Heitze against him.  There is no room on the Ambridge Democrat Committee for good guys. What a shame, I hope Mike beats this guy.

    1. Nikki

      No, not even close. Sadly, I think the death knell has sounded for them with the promotion of Jimmy Mann to chief. THAT’S a walking disaster just looking for a place and time to happen.


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