Missouri Prosecutor Issues Subpoena To Reporters Demanding Emails They Had With Her Ex-Husband

from the abuse-of-power? dept

The story of Russ Faria is already fairly bizarre. Convicted of killing his wife, he was just granted a retrial after a news investigation by the St. Louis Post Dispatch and the local Fox affiliate turned up serious questions about the original prosecution and newly discovered evidence that was not presented at the original trial. But that's not what caught my attention about the story. It appears that just before the judge was going to decide whether or not there would be a new trial, the prosecutor in the case, Leah Askey, issued subpoenas to the two main journalists involved in the investigation, demanding all texts and emails between them and Askey's ex-husband.

The full story is super confusing, but it appears to involve allegations that one of the witnesses used against Faria has been accused, by some, of actually having an affair with Askey:
The appeals court also mentioned an allegation that Lincoln County Prosecuting Attorney Leah Askey was having an undisclosed romance with a police officer who testified against Faria.

Askey has denied having a relationship with the married officer, and issued subpoenas for Friday’s hearing lining up witnesses who include her ex-husband, stepbrother, a handwriting expert and two news reporters. She also had listed herself as a witness, until a defense attorney suggested that she be removed from the case for doing so.
The reporters in question, Robert Patrick from the St. Louis Post Dispatch and Chris Hayes from the Fox 2 affiliate had to get their lawyers involved to try to quash the subpoenas:
Subpoenas for testimony and documents also were served on reporters Chris Hayes of Fox 2 News and Robert Patrick of the Post-Dispatch, who worked together on investigating the Faria trial and civil litigation by Betsy Faria’s daughters against Hupp.

Lawyers for both reporters filed motions, still pending, to quash the subpoenas as a violation of the First Amendment, Missouri Constitution and common law “reporter’s privilege.” The motions also say that there “is strong reason to believe” the subpoenas were issued “with the intent to stifle critics.”
You think? Isn't there a massive conflict of interest when a prosecutor who is being accused of questionable conduct in a case uses her power as a prosecutor to not just issue subpoenas over reporters' sources, but especially when some of those sources are her own ex-husband? Wouldn't standard practice be to immediately recuse yourself from the situation due to the incredibly obvious conflict of interest?

After granting the new trial, Askey apparently asked the judge if it had anything to do with the reports of her own relationship with the witness, and the judge said it was about the other evidence. The witness in question had been called to the stand and denied any such relationship.
Askey was the first to raise the romance issue in court Friday. It was settled when the investigator took the witness stand and denied any romantic relationship.

After Ohmer announced his decision to give Faria a new trial, Askey asked whether he was basing that decision solely on the Hupp material or whether he had found any evidence supporting the relationship.

“I did not. I did not touch that,” he said, saying that the only issue was Hupp.
So it appears the issue involving her ex-husband and the reporters has likely been put to rest, but still, it should raise serious questions about why no one stepped in to prevent it from happening in the first place.
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Filed Under: chris hayes, journalism, leah askey, lincoln county, missouri, reporting, robert patrick, russ faria, scandal, subpoena


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  • icon
    Blackfiredragon13 (profile), 9 Jun 2015 @ 9:44am

    My head's spinning.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Mason Wheeler (profile), 9 Jun 2015 @ 9:59am

      Re:

      Mine too. What do allegations that this woman was having an affair with one of the witnesses have to do with this woman's ex-husband? It feels like there are a bunch of details missing from this account...

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 9 Jun 2015 @ 10:17am

        Re: Re:

        You can make some educated guesses. My guess is that the divorce was recent. Her husband or her husband's attorney accused her of infidelity during the divorce. She think's he was trying to get revenge by talking to the reporters. Or maybe he already knew the reporters and she was just trying to twist the knife a little.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Jun 2015 @ 9:51am

    Looks to me like Ms. Askey is trying to get promoted to federal prosecutor by demonstrating she has the appropriate lack of restraint and morals necessary for the job.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Bamboo Harvester (profile), 9 Jun 2015 @ 9:57am

    "Subpoenas for testimony and documents also were served on ... and Robert Patrick..."

    Personally, *I* wouldn't serve a subpoena on a Terminator....

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Jun 2015 @ 10:06am

    I'm sorry, I didn't realise it was mandatory to be a petty and vindictive fucker when applying for Prosecutor in the US.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Anonymous Coward, 9 Jun 2015 @ 10:14am

      Re:

      How would you characterize someone who's only goal is number of kills, erm convictions?

      If only prosecutors were valued based upon quality rather than quantity.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    nasch (profile), 9 Jun 2015 @ 10:15am

    Herself?

    She also had listed herself as a witness, until a defense attorney suggested that she be removed from the case for doing so.

    Holy... what the... the prosecutor tried to testify in the case she was prosecuting?? She should be considered for removal from office, not just this case. She's either incredibly corrupt, or incredibly stupid, or both.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    thinlygasted, 9 Jun 2015 @ 10:22am

    So subpoena of their emails is "silencing" critics? Seems to me FORCED to speak!

    Expand on YOUR reasoning. Don't just hint around with questions and innnuendo. You brought this up -- out of all possible articles -- and now I want to know WHAT is so important or twisted here?

    There'll be a NEW trial. Michael Masnick doesn't need to concern himself or readers because will be plenty of opportunities for any revelations.

    Besides, you relate that this prosecutor directly brought up questions about self "and the judge said it was about the other evidence."

    This is just that Masnick, who's only read reports and admits is "super-confusing", is DESPERATE for a story! He could pick something current TECH about Apple's new PAY for music, or Disney's record profits, or anything Google, but this TINY bit of possible DIRT is safe.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    AnonCow, 9 Jun 2015 @ 10:39am

    I'm curious about what happened between the prosecutor and the cop to even get that rumor started. That isn't just happenstance.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Jasmine Charter, 9 Jun 2015 @ 12:18pm

    She'll make an excellent attorney general

    With that much disregard for the law and the willingness to use legal and extra-legal methods to push her agenda, she'll make an excellent Attorney General!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    RT (profile), 10 Jun 2015 @ 11:53am

    Malicious Prosecution

    The damage from Askey's misconduct and malicious prosecution has been devastating, not only has she knowingly and willingly allowed guilty people like Pamela Hupp to go free, but also put an OBVIOUS innocent man (Russ Faria)in prison. Askey's wrongdoing in the Faria case has proven to be egregious! Not only did Askey ambush the courts and jury with her continuous flow of LIE'S - but she also manipulated and withheld important evidence which is a bedrock principle of our justice system which falls under the U.S. Supreme Court’s (1963 Brady v. Maryland.) Askey's affair with Detective Lang before and during the Faria trial is NO surprise to me personally, as it is obvious she has no moral compass outside OR inside the courtroom. I am grateful for the media for having kept this case alive in order to convey the TRUTH to the public and to FREE an 'innocent man' Russ Faria which in turn has explosed PA Askey for 'who' she truly is! PA Askey who manipulated and LIED in order to help convict an obvious 'innocent man' is repugnant to our Constitution!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Anotherdisgrace7991 (profile), 17 Jun 2015 @ 6:21pm

    Why isn't Lincoln County Firing Askey?

    This woman is a DISGRACE to her office, her FAMILY, and herself!! Why isn't Lincoln County or at the very least the STATE OF MISSOURI firing this crazy Woman!! Why has she been allowed to step in and start to proceed in a second trial against Russ Faria!!! She's an adulterer and she has no business in office when she is sleeping with the cops to get her convictions!! Isn't anyone wondering HOW MANY CASES THAT THIS POWER ABUSING B**** HAS THROWN??? It's high time someone fires her and starts REVIEWING EVERY CASE SHES WORKED ON. If I were anyone that she prosecuted I would be asking for a NEW TRIAL!! She's CROOKED! People of Lincoln County OPEN YOUR EYES DEMAND SHES FIRED! Do it before it's one of YOUR relatives!!!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    LB, 14 Aug 2015 @ 9:27am

    Lincoln County is Scary

    This woman is unreal. But then I could say the same about the detectives and original judge. With respect to this case, Dateline did a much better investigation than the detectives involved. Granted, it must have looked like Russ Faria did it at first but at some point the detectives/prosecution saw that Pam Huff's cellphone records putting her near the crime. They learned about the insurance policy (and the huge motive it gave Huff) yet they came up with some ridiculous conspiracy theory against Faria's friends and still went through with prosecuting Faria. And now they're going to do it again? How About Going After The Real Criminal?!?! How are these people even employed? They should be ashamed of themselves.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anotherdisgrace7991, 15 Aug 2015 @ 2:33pm

    Leah Askey deserves to be fired immediately

    not only that but disbarred. Has ANYONE stopped to think that
    Perhaps the husband KNEW of her dirty dealings and he was just
    Not in the position or too emotionally upset by her AFFAIRS, to come forward with her misconduct at the time. Hopefully someone tells the truth here and Russ will stay a free man, Leah Askey will be DISBARRED,Pam Hupp will get ARRESTED like she should have been in the FIRST PLACE, and these families can move on with their lives. Leah Askey is what's wrong with our Criminal Justice system.. A blood thirst for power, position and money. Remove her from Office. I suggest EVERYONE reading this writes to the Atty General themselves asking for Leah Askey to be disbarred!!! Get one corrupt PA out of our courts, We can make a difference. Only when true Justice is served will the Faria family be able to move forward in peace. DISBAR LEAH ASKEY!!!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Will Jackson, 8 Nov 2015 @ 8:49pm

    Russ Faria new trial

    When are they gonna arrest Pam Hupp and her husband for the murder? Also, they should nail that prosecutor to the wall as well, make an example.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Juliana, 8 Nov 2015 @ 9:23pm

    Arrest this prosecutor!!! How stupid is Lincoln County???
    Arrest Askey for her role in sending an innocent man to jail and
    Misery!!! Get rid of the Loncoln County Judge that allowed this and let
    The Attorney General CLEAN HOUSE!!! Lincoln County
    Residents should be DEMANDING THIS!!! After
    All of this and the other cases overturned.. There is something
    Very ROTTEN IN LINCOLN COUNTY JUSTICE SYSTEM!!!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Laura, 23 Jan 2016 @ 10:19am

    I turned on Dateline and the first interview I saw with this prosecutor, I balked at the misconduct of Askey. The police, prosecutors and the judge MUST be held accountable for not just their incompetence and blindness, but their neglegent investigative practices and biased beliefs. They are a BANE on the justice system and yet another example of the messed up and unethical people who gain powerful positions in law enforcement.

    The cops and Askey blatantly coached and fed the real killer Pam a story and a way to not look guilty. My jaw is still dropping from the what police and prosecutor's stated happened and how. Wow.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Concerned citizen, 24 Jan 2016 @ 10:08am

    Prosecutor NEEDS TO GO TO JAIL!!!

    Pam Hupp and Ms Askey NEED to be in jail together! No EXCUSES!!!
    Ms Askey has went in with her life as if nothing is going on
    After putting an innocent man in PRISON? Let Ms Askey pay for her
    Criminal negligence in not looking at the real suspect!!
    Perhaps with the new story that Pam Hupp brought a sack of cash to the
    Office of Ms Askey, don't you wonder if MS ASKEY took cash?
    Look in the records people ASKEY is in financial trouble she has property that was almost sold on the courthouse stairs!!! Come on doesn't this SCREAM of a coverup? Something is fishy... Check the money trail and subpoena Askey's financial transactions around the same time Hupp brought the "sack of cash"!!! Why aren't people DIGGING into Askey MORE? Take your blinders off people Lincoln County is FULL of crooks!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Citizens to Stop Lincoln County Corruption, 6 Feb 2016 @ 1:16pm

    Leah Askey should be disbarred

    We agree with everyone above Please help us remove the real criminals in Lincoln County Courts and Sheriffs Department by signing the petition at https://www.change.org/p/united-states-department-of-justice-united-states-department-of-justice-inv estigate-lincoln-county-missouri-courts-sheriff?recruiter=350109036&utm_source=share_petition&am p;utm_medium=copylink There is dignity in resistance and it is way past time that the Feds Take over Lincoln County and put the real criminals in the Courts the prosecutors office and the Juvenile office in jail where they try to put anyone who will not pay them with a bag of cash in a brown paper bag.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Michael Todd, 26 Feb 2016 @ 7:37pm

    INEPT PROSECUTOR LEAH ASKEY & KILLER PAM HUPP

    The VOTERS need to get this inept & corrupt prosecutor LEAH ASKEY out of office. EVERYONE knows that this women (PAM HUPP) killed Betsy BUT the stupid prosecutor won't charge her because the prosecutor was so narrow-minded and focused on the husband, that she looked past this killer and used her as her "star witness." Now, the stupid prosecutor wants to save face and is willing to let the REAL KILLER go free -- just to save face! Such B.S.!!! The State needs to step in because this PATHETIC prosecutor is biased and won't do the right thing because it will expose her to be the IDIOT that she is .... WE CAN'T LET THIS WOMAN GET AWAY WITH MURDER. An online campaign has to be started to get justice for Betsy, her husband, and her kids. Pam Hupp is PURE EVIL and needs to spend the rest of her life in prison. Reminds me of the ex-wife DANA CHANDLER who drove from Colorado to Kansas; hid in the closet with a bottle of wine; and killer her ex-husband & his new wife and everyone knew she did it -- but it took YEARS to finally convict her.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Michael Todd, 26 Feb 2016 @ 7:37pm

    INEPT PROSECUTOR LEAH ASKEY & KILLER PAM HUPP

    The VOTERS need to get this inept & corrupt prosecutor LEAH ASKEY out of office.

    EVERYONE knows that this women (PAM HUPP) killed Betsy BUT the stupid prosecutor won't charge her because the prosecutor was so narrow-minded and focused on the husband, that she looked past this killer and used her as her "star witness."

    Now, the stupid prosecutor wants to save face and is willing to let the REAL KILLER go free -- just to save face! Such B.S.!!!

    The State needs to step in because this PATHETIC prosecutor is biased and won't do the right thing because it will expose her to be the IDIOT that she is .... WE CAN'T LET THIS WOMAN GET AWAY WITH MURDER.

    An online campaign has to be started to get justice for Betsy, her husband, and her kids. Pam Hupp is PURE EVIL and needs to spend the rest of her life in prison.

    Reminds me of the ex-wife DANA CHANDLER who drove from Colorado to Kansas; hid in the closet with a bottle of wine; and killer her ex-husband & his new wife and everyone knew she did it -- but it took YEARS to finally convict her.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Nicole Wolfe, 4 Jun 2016 @ 6:32pm

    Leah Askey

    This prosecutor should be ABSOLUTELY ASHAMED of herself!!! Makes me SICK to think that it's people like HER that screw innocent people!! She should be barred & sent to prison herself to see how the hell she likes it. Stupid b**ch.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    shandy (profile), 30 Jun 2016 @ 10:19pm

    askey-lange affair, faria trial

    who was the first judge?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Laura Anderson, 31 Jul 2016 @ 6:46pm

    Corrupted prosecutors

    Being a full blown liar, malicious, untrustworthy, shady, unethical, crooked,
    Arrogant, hateful, and sinister. Just a few words to describe what's required to be a prosector. Trust me I know first hand my family and I are dealing with some (dealing as in associated with) not like dealing marijuana. I didn't want that word to be misconstrued. Good luck to the reporters hopefully you'll find lawyers that will work for you not against you.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    dbarry (profile), 19 Nov 2016 @ 4:12am

    Leah Askey should never ever be able to work again. Worst prosecutor in the world. Leah should be sharing a jail cell with Pam Huff- enjoying a lesbian affair

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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