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February 27, 2009

Latest notable news surrounding former judge (now felon) Sam Kent

Thanks to Mary Flood at the Houston Chronicle, there is lots of good reporting on all the latest developments in the wake of the felony plea entered earlier this week by now-former federal district judge Samuel Kent (basics here).  Here are the headlines and links:

The second of these stories provides an early preview of what will become chief topics of interest in Kent's sentencing proceedings this spring:

Judge Samuel Kent is a psychologically broken man who served well on the bench for 18 years and deserves mercy and his pension, his lawyer said Thursday.

In the first interview he gave on the Kent case since a gag order was imposed last fall, Kent’s lawyer Dick DeGuerin told the Houston Chronicle that he would not discuss the particulars of the case but he would talk about the plight of his client. “The truth is he’s been a walking basket case for several years,” DeGuerin said. “He’s not the same man since his wife, Mary Ann, died a long and tragic death.  He probably should have taken off a year and gotten psychological help.”  Kent’s first wife of more than 30 years had a brain tumor and died in 2000.

DeGuerin, able to discuss the case because the gag order was lifted Thursday, said Kent threw himself into his work. “Any conduct he’s accused of in this case happened since then,” said DeGuerin.

Kent pleaded guilty Monday to obstruction of justice for lying to a judicial committee investigating an allegation he sexually harassed an employee. Kent also acknowledged that he’d had unconsensual sexual contact with two female employees between 2003 and 2007. DeGuerin said he hopes the sentencing judge will consider all the good Kent has done when it comes time to decide whether to follow the prosecutor’s suggestion he be sent to prison for three years.

Rusty Hardin, whose client Cathy McBroom was one of the women Kent made unwanted advances toward, said his client and other women will wait until sentencing to tell their stories. “But what he put these women through is all that should really be considered,” Hardin said. “During those 18 years he claims to have served, it should also be noted that he made life miserable for a legion of litigants in his court.”

Related posts on the Kent proceedings:

February 27, 2009 at 10:30 AM | Permalink

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Comments

Wow. Almost nine years' worth of litigation, civil and criminal, that is now exposed to close scrutiny for further options, based on what DeGuerin said.

Posted by: ALB | Feb 27, 2009 11:18:41 AM

Rusty Hardin. You've got to be kidding me. Perhaps he should withdraw the defamation lawsuit he filed for Roger Clemens-- good strategy, make the one issue you want to go away (whether your client was a doper) the very subject of a widely publicized suit.

It's worth noting that Rusty obviously isn't representing his client in the criminal proceedings (unless there are some victims' rights filings we don't know about)-- his thoughts on what should be considered at sentencing don't conform with Section 3553 (you can't narrow it down to the offense conduct alone).

Posted by: Dan | Feb 27, 2009 11:57:16 PM

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