Remember the original charges against James O’Keefe being in Landrieu's office? Never mind

Well, I am sure that there couldn't be any politics in releasing this information immediately after the congress has finished all its votes on health care. Note also that this information was released late on a Friday, the typical time that news stories are released that the government wants to give little attention to. It turns out that O'Keefe did what he said that he had done: he was trying to document that Landrieu's office was just refusing to answer the telephone.

Federal prosecutors filed formal misdemeanor charges Friday in connection with a January incident involving four conservative activists and the telephone system at the office of Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) in New Orleans.

Joseph Basel, 24, Stan Dai, 24, Robert Flanagan, 24, and James O’Keefe, 25, were each charged with one misdemeanor count of obtaining access to federal property by false pretenses. The charging document says the men decided Basel and Flanagan "would pretend to be repair technicians from the telephone company and would, while disguised to look like telephone repairmen, state to staff members of the senator that they were following up on reports of problems with the telephone system, engage them in a coversation about the telephone system, and pretend to test the phone system" while O'Keefe videotaped the encounter.

A preliminary complaint filed in the case in January indicated that the men were intent on committing a felony when they entered Landrieu's office on January 25. However, the "information" filed in federal court Friday makes no mention of any alleged effort by the four men to damage the telephone equipment as was originally reported.

The relatively minor charges filed Friday carry a maximum sentence of six months in jail and a fine of up to $5000. If prosecutors chose to pursue felony charges of attempting to destroy federal infrastructure, the men could have faced lengthy prison terms.

While early press reports suggested there may have been a nefarious plot to interfere with Landrieu's phones, later stories indicated that the incident was some sort of effort to verify or dramatize claims that the senator's office was ignoring calls from angry constituents. . . .

At 8:12 PM, about five hours after the info was released, according to a Google news search.



Blogger OldSouth said...

Golly. Whoodathunkit?

3/28/2010 12:04 AM  

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