I am Tom Freeland, a lawyer in Oxford, Mississippi. The picture in the header is my law office. I'm on Twitter as NMissC

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News Reports of DeLaughter’s Guilty Plea

Jerry Mitchell’s story in today’s Clarion Ledger has a summary of the case and DeLaughter’s career, along with quotes from and from Charles Merkel.  From Myrlie Evers-Williams:

“It just makes me sick,” she said. “I’m devastated by the turn of events. I don’t know what to say. Bobby will always have a special place in history for the wonderful work he has done over the years and will always have a place in my heart. My prayers are with him as he meets this next challenge in his life.”

…Wilson’s attorney, Charlie Merkel of Clarksdale, said he believes the guilty plea proves DeLaughter was influenced.

“I can’t imagine a more despicable act by a judicial official,” he said. “It totally undermines the judicial system.”

There’s also the obligatory Matt Steffey quote, which suggests that, by pleading guilty to the lying charge instead of the influence charges, DeLaughter has preserved… I’ll paraphrase here… bragging rights.

Steffey is also on Mississippi Public Radio’s Mississippi Edition this morning in his role of village explainer: “This allows him to maintain that he did not corruptly rule in this case or in any other.”

Patsy Brumfield writes about the plea in the Daily Journal.

14 comments to News Reports of DeLaughter’s Guilty Plea

  • [...] Scruggs judicial influence scandals. Coverage: Patsy Brumfield/Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal, Tom Freeland, guestblogger S. Todd Smith (Buffalo lawprof) at Point of [...]

  • Bayrat

    “The road goes on forever and the party never ends.”

  • Only When I Laugh

    What was the lie, that there was no direct communication with Peters?

  • NotZachScruggs

    Where is Trent Lott’s spokesman? What’s his take on this?

  • Observer

    In response to Bayrat:

    “Its Capitol Street after midnight just like it was before
    21 months later at the local convenience store
    Ed Peters buys a paper and a cold 6-pack of beer
    The headlines read that Bobby, out of prison, is going home to there,
    Ed Peters pulls back onto High Street in his new Mercedes Benz
    The road goes on forever and the party never ends

    LOTS of apologies to REK.

  • Anderson

    What’s his take on this?

    Rhymes with “mo bomment,” I suspect.

    (Hadn’t realized before that nothing rhymes with “comment.”)

  • Bayrat

    Observer: that works for me. I guess we’ll just have to wait a while longer to see whether the fat lady will entertain the huddled masses with her melodies, or disappoint. Stay tuned.

  • ampal

    ed peters got the best deal of the bunch while langston and patterson rot in jail. the feds ought to be ashamed.

  • Yep it seems that as things drifted toward the DeLaughter matters there’s a reduction of some legal actions in favor of the DEAL! behind door no. 3

  • BlackBear

    I think it is worth remembering that all of this is speculation which, just as recently as last week, had the government with no case on DaLaughter at all and both men walking. I realize that patience in times of 24-hour news cycles is really low, but I think that if we were to sit back, enjoy a beverage and the rest of summer, interesting things may just unfold. (btw, pure speculation)

  • a friend of the law

    Blackbear, the charge that Delaughter pled guilty to has been out there all along and was the strongest count against him — under the circumstances, virtually indefensible. But, compared to the other charges, it is likely the least serious from a sentencing standpoint. Assuming the sentencing guidelines are followed, Delaughter will get off relatively light —compared to what could have been if the prosecution’s case on the other counts were stronger and the case had been successfully tried to convictions on those counts. Apparently, as many of us speculated, Peters’ testimony was not going to be all that compelling or helpful on the other counts —-which still raises the question of: why the sweet deal with Peters in the first place? I still think this was all part of a fall back plan of sorts by Peters and Delaughter. Simply put, Peters outfoxed the feds and the Scruggs team. “Justice” was not served with respect to Peters. But, one thing that life has taught me —-what goes around, always comes around — Peters will eventually get what is coming to him (as will us all).

  • tinwindows

    NMC: explainer? LOL

  • Denis Smyth

    What was U.S. Attorney Jim Greenlee thinking? Full immunity to Ed Peters! Joey Langston, who opened this can of worms, is siting in jail. Ed is out fishing. DOJ should investigate Greenlee’s bonehead decision.

  • From the CL. The CL. is reporting that DeLaughter’s plea will allow him to claim a proper ruling regarding OTHER cases. Bragging rights. What other cases? It states an action in where DeLaughter concealed a jury award. Has he hidden other awards? Also states that other complaints may go unresolved. What happen to due process of law and constitutional rights of claims related to those complaints. I’m thinking long meetings now and people attending them who ain’t spoken of.

    Let’s see were in Mississippi this isn’t Roswell New Mexico or area 51 so what gives here. OK may be it’s like this a big and I mean a big bunch of money landed in the Hinds county court and as what goes around try’s to come around it meets the GOB.

    The GOB is real and in some instances obvious. Problematic to resolve is the snake skin like event in where the old must die before the new can be had. Americans usually refuse to go down without a fight making this all the more odd, since whats going on is related to criminal acts.

    But hey in the mental state and thoughts of the GOB they probably think there saving man kind.

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