A motion to gag attorneys defending a woman making accusations against Lieutenant Governor Jennifer Carroll fell flat today. But even though a gag order was denied, as Whitney Ray tells us, both sides have agreed to tone it down.
In a quick court hearing, following a long closed door meeting, a Leon County Judge refused to silence attorneys making allegations against Lt. Governor Jennifer Carroll.
“I’m not going to enter a gag order, but I’m expecting compliance with the rule of professional conduct,” said Judge Frank Sheffield from the bench in a Tuesday morning hearing.
The prosecution sought the gag order in the case of Carletha Cole, the former Carroll employee charged with distributing an illegal recording.
Cole’s attorneys claim their client was setup because she caught Carroll in a “compromising position” with a female aide. The allegations made headlines across the globe.
The governor’s office dismissed the claims as “outrageous” and directed me to the state attorney’s office for any comment on the case, but after Tuesday’s hearing the prosecutor bolted out of the courtroom without talking to reporters.
Steve Andrews, one of Cole’s attorneys, stuck around. Andrews says the judge wasn’t’ happy with how attorneys on both sides were handling the case.
“It was joint scolding. You know Judge Sheffield wants a fair trial and so do we,” said Andrews.
And even though the gag order wasn’t issued, both sides have agreed to tone it down.
“All sides should air on the side of caution with regards to public statements and we will,” said Andrews.
Before Andrews began speaking out, he says Cole wasn’t being treated fairly in the media. Now, he feels, as he backs away from the spotlight, the playing field for his client in the court of public opinion has been leveled.
The next move for the defense is to file a deposition list, and Carroll will be on it.