An assistant state attorney at the Orange-Osceola State Attorney’s Office resigned his position last week after an investigation into communications he had with the daughter of an Isleworth man he prosecuted.
Mark Interlicchio was one of two prosecutors, along with Will Jay, assigned to the case of Bob Ward, who earlier this year was convicted of manslaughter for the 2009 death of his wife, Dianne Ward. He had previously been convicted of second-degree murder for his wife’s death, but that conviction was overturned.
As reported by Gal Tziperman Lotan of the Orlando Sentinel, Interlicchio contacted Ward’s adult daughter, Mallory Ward, via Facebook two days after her father was found guilty. Mallory Ward left the courtroom and punched a wall as the verdict was read.
A partial transcript of the messages:
Interlicchio: “How’s the hand Will told me what happened?”
Ward: “Splinted. Swollen. Bruised. All the things you’d expect for someone who doesn’t punch a lot of [expletive].”
Ward: “Let’s be real. I probably shouldn’t be talking to you at allllll. You could be waiting for me to say something that’ll really screw my dad for all I know.”
Interlicchio: “No I am not unethical.”
Ward: “Your appreciation of been and jungle games makes me want to believe that.”
Interlicchio acknowledged that he had resigned his position but did not proved further comment to the Orlando Sentinel. State Attorney Aramis Ayala said Jay will remain on the case for Ward’s June 14 sentencing hearing.
“I take professionalism and integrity in my office very seriously, and when the personal communication was brought to my attention I immediately suspended the ASA pending an investigation,” Ayala said in a statement. “The ASA no longer is employed with my office. I am confident that the successful prosecution of Bob Ward was not compromised.”
Bob Ward’s attorney, Sean Ellsworth, said he was looking into to whether the communications between Interlicchio and Mallory Ward are relevant to his client’s case, but did not comment further.