Former BigLaw partner is sentenced to 2 years in prison for cyberstalking former colleagues
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Fired K&L Gates partner Willie Dennis was sentenced Friday to two years in prison following his federal conviction in Manhattan, New York City, for cyberstalking three former colleagues.
U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff of the Southern District of New York sentenced Dennis, 60, to a prison term lower than the 4½ years requested by the government, report Law360 and Law.com. He also told Dennis that he could not contact the three victims and could not approach anyone now or previously at the law firm.
A press Feb. 10 release from the Department of Justice is here.
According to the DOJ’s press release, Dennis “engaged in a yearslong campaign of harassment, intimidation and threats against his victims, who were partners at the law firm.” Dennis sent the victims “thousands of harassing, threatening and intimidating emails and text messages,” despite warnings to stop.
Dennis “sent the messages at all hours of the day and night,” according to the press release. “He demeaned the victims, called some of them by racist and antisemitic names and warned them that they would become ‘biblical symbols.’ In his threats, he told one victim to ‘sleep with one eye open.’”
Dennis had maintained that his messages addressed sexual harassment, racial discrimination and poor management at the firm.
Dennis apologized during the sentencing.
Dennis had represented himself during the trial. Lawyer David Cohen was appointed to represent Dennis at sentencing, Law360 reports.
“The trial was a disaster. He had no business representing himself,” Cohen said.
Cohen told Law360 that his client will argue on appeal that he should get a lower sentence because of “serious and significant medical issues.”
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ABAJournal.com: “Fired K&L Gates partner is charged with cyberstalking former colleagues”