Saturday, November 20, 2010

Next Time, Bill Kelly Should Listen to Rasputin

First, let me say that I like William Kelly. That's why I warned him on October 15 to not file charges against CBS2 reporter Jay Levine for alleged assault. I told Kelly that no reasonable judge would believe that Kelly actually felt that he was in physical danger when Levine told Kelly he would "deck" him if Kelly didn't stop interrupting him and other real reporters while they were trying to interview Rahm Emanuel on October 15. Kelly sent an email news release out at 1:06 p.m. on Oct. 15, excitedly telling people, "I filed a police report and signed an arrest warrant against Jay Levine for assault. The Chicago police have already reviewed the video and agreed that an assault was committed." Apparently, nobody told Kelly that very few cops know as much about law as any lawyer does. Moments after receiving his news release, I emailed Kelly and advised him that what he was doing was foolish. He did not agree, sadly, and felt that his video "proved" that Jay Levine "assaulted" him. I told him, warned him, that the whole thing was a huge error judgment and would only make him look foolish and petty. I hate to say it, but I was right. The judge agreed with me. Why? Because the judge knows more about Illinois assault law than the cops do. Bill Kelly ended up wasting the court's time, Jay Levine's time, and might end up being counter sued for defamation - not to mention legal costs. Was it a crass political publicity stunt, or naive self deception? I prefer to believe it was the latter, but many others will long suspect the former. (Private Note to Bill Kelly: You should have listened to your own Rasputin. There's a reason why you used to call me that, you know.)