Prosecutor tells investigator: we don’t have to accept report clearing Phill Kline
Note: For more general background on this important case, click here.
TOPEKA, Kansas, February 28, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The disciplinary administrator prosecuting Phill Kline told an ethics investigator Friday that his office did not have to accept a report co-authored by her, which had cleared Kline of any ethics violations in his investigation and prosecution of Planned Parenthood and George Tiller.
Mary Beth Mudrick, co-authors of the 2008 DeFries and Mudrick report investigating Kline for ethics violations, took the stand Friday to tell the disciplinary panel that her 55-hour investigation found “no probable cause” that Kline ever committed ethics violations.
Mudrick said her May 21, 2008 report was very comprehensive and “tried to make of list of everything we reviewed.”
She also affirmed that she and Lucky DeFries found that, contrary to the allegations in the formal complaint filed by ethics investigator Stan Hazlett, the privacy interests of adult patients were a matter of importance to then-Attorney General Phill Kline’s office.
Kline’s attorney, Reid Holbrook, asked if she and DeFries found any reason that Kline’s appearance on the O’Reilly Factor on November 3, 2006 would have constituted an ethics violation.
Mudrick told the court that her investigation found “no probable cause” that Kline had violated any ethics rules, either in the O’Reilly appearance, or in the trial publicity of the George Tiller and Planned Parenthood case.
Holbrook proceeded to list more allegations of ethics violations brought forward by Hazlett, including charges that Kline made false or misleading statements to the court.
“No, we did not find probable cause in any of the complaints before us at the time,” explained Mudrick, citing the overriding findings of her report on page 13.
While cross-examining Mudrick, however, Hazlett said that the findings and recommendations of her report “ultimately are not binding on the review committee.” Mudrick affirmed that the disciplinary board did not have to accept her and DeFries’ recommendations.
Hazlett also asked if Mudrick was aware that his office had another investigation into Kline underway, and that he filed other allegations in the formal complaint that her team did not review. Mudrick affirmed both as true.
Hazlett explained that such allegations that are outside the scope of Mudrick and DeFries investigation including charges of misleading statements to SRS (Social and Rehabilitative Services), that Kline’s inquisition into the abortion providers started “without a definite complaint,” that he investigated LaQuinta Inn to obtain the names of adult women patients of late-term abortionist George Tiller (a charge emphatically denied by Kline personnel testifying all week), hat he failed to divulge information to Judge Richard Anderson, and that he took redacted Tiller records to Johnson county that were not listed in the Status and Disposition Report given to Judge Anderson.
Mudrick also explained later, under questioning by Holbrook, that Judge Anderson never raised any additional complaints or concerns about Phill Kline when she and DeFries examined him for their report.
A copy of the DeFries and Mudrick report exonerating Phill Kline is available here.
A summary of the Disciplinary Administrator’s allegations against Kline are available here.