News

Prosecutor Who Impregnated A Defendant And Slept With Juror Now Running For Judge

   DailyWire.com
A close-up of a judge's gavel in his hand in the courtroom.
RichLegg/Getty Images

A Republican-elected Kentucky state’s attorney who admitted to impregnating a defendant and having an affair with a dismissed alternate juror now wants to become a judge.

Matthew Leveridge, the commonwealth’s attorney for Russell and Wayne counties in Kentucky, was prosecuting Latisha Sartain back in 2011 for trafficking in a controlled substance, The Daily Beast reported. Leveridge placed Sartain on pretrial diversion for five years, but began an affair with her in 2015, three years into her five-year diversion. Sartain became pregnant and told Leveridge’s wife about the affair, after which Leveridge moved to void Sartain’s pretrial diversion.

“If you’re a prosecutor, you’re not even supposed to talk to a defendant without her attorney being present, much less — well, this,” Sartain’s attorney Larry Rogers told the Lexington Herald-Leader at the time. “Universally, I think everyone would agree this is a big, big, big no-no.”

Sartain’s pretrial diversion was later reinstated by a special prosecutor. Leveridge was investigated for the affair with Sartain, but was never indicted, The Beast reported.

Leveridge also admitted to sleeping with a woman in 2013 who had been dismissed as an alternate juror for a murder trial. He said at the time that he thought she was done with jury duty, though, as The Beast reported, the juror said she had been called to serve on a different panel but was dismissed when that case settled. This woman also told investigators from the attorney general’s public corruption/special investigations unit that Leveridge “was just using her for sex” and she didn’t understand how “someone with a wife, a child and such an important job would take such risks.”

Leveridge’s actions did raise concerns that he may have breached the Rules of Professional Conduct for lawyers, but he was never charged with a crime and the Kentucky Supreme Court never sanctioned him, even though he admitted to the affairs.

“A few years ago I made a mistake in my life,” Leveridge told the Louisville Courier Journal. “I acknowledged the mistake, sought forgiveness, took responsibility and accepted the consequences. I learned from the mistake and have since moved on to a better life, both personally and professionally.”

Now Leveridge is running to be a circuit judge, The Beast reported.

Leveridge’s candidacy has definitely ruffled feathers, given his history. Fellow Republican Ken Upchurch, who represents Kentucky’s 52nd district in the state’s House of Representatives, told the Courier Journal he was shocked to learn of Leveridge’s candidacy.

“It’s like the church head deacon having an affair with the choir director, then wanting to be the preacher,” Upchurch told the outlet.

The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  Prosecutor Who Impregnated A Defendant And Slept With Juror Now Running For Judge