Federal Judge Kent Lied About ‘Affair’ to Protect Lady, His Lawyer Says
Posted Feb 17, 2009 8:36 PM CDT
By Martha Neil
A federal judge facing unprecedented criminal sexual abuse charges was simply being a gentleman when he lied, in an earlier judicial investigation, about what he now describes as an affair, his lawyer said today in court.
However, attorney Dick DeGuerin was not successful in his attempt to persuade Senior U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson, who was brought in from Florida to hear the Houston-based federal case against U.S. District Judge Samuel Kent, either to dismiss or to sever the obstruction charge, reports the Houston Chronicle.
Kent is scheduled to go to trial on Monday on the obstruction count and five additional charges of sexual abuse involving two female court employees. Specifically, they include three counts of abusive sexual contact and one count each of attempted aggravated sexual abuse and aggravated sexual abuse, the newspaper reports.
DeGuerin had sought to sever the obstruction count because Kent reportedly wants to testify in his own defense on the sex abuse counts and say that the conduct at issue was consensual, but avoid testifying concerning the obstruction allegation. Kent has pleaded not guilty to all of the charges, and has previously vociferously defended his innocence, through DeGuerin.
“Through the ages, the recognized proper course of conduct was to not discuss affairs of the heart. It’s nothing more than that,” DeGuerin told Vinson in court today, referring to the earlier judicial conduct investigation concerning Kent.
Earlier ABAJournal.com coverage: