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PR: Excusing the Inexcusable: SAVE Deplores Plan to Give Free Pass to Crusading Prosecutor who Engaged in Unethical Practices for Six Years

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Contact: Teri Stoddard

Excusing the Inexcusable: SAVE Deplores Plan to Give Free Pass to Crusading Prosecutor who Engaged in Unethical Practices for Six Years

WASHINGTON / July 17, 2013 – Seven months after a state ethics panel determined Hancock Co. prosecutor Mary Kellett engaged in “inexcusable” misconduct, Justice Ellen Gorman has announced a plan that would seemingly excuse Kellett’s unethical behavior. On Monday, Gorman announced she intends to shelve a 30-day suspension on assistant district attorney Mary Kellett. As a result, no sanctions will be placed on the prosecutor who engaged in unethical practices over a period of 6 years, resulting in the wrongful conviction of an innocent man.

Stop Abusive and Violent Environments – SAVE — deplores the impending decision as an affront to every citizen of Maine who believes the criminal justice system should be “just.”

The facts of the case reveal accuser Ligia Filler often changed her story to suit the circumstances. The woman was a known child-abuser with profound mental health problems, as revealed by a police recording:

In normal cases, Ligia Filler would have undergone extensive mental health counseling, and her accusations of marital rape quickly dismissed.

But Hancock Co. ADA Kellett was known to be an aggressive, even crusading prosecutor. In numerous cases, Kellett has been found to prosecute innocent men, even when media accounts revealed the sex was consensual or the accusation fabricated:

In her quest to convict defendant Vladek Filler, prosecutor Kellett withheld key pieces of evidence. This information would have revealed the accuser’s unstable emotional state, likely leading the jury to reach a “not guilty” verdict.

Eventually, Kellett got caught. On December 5, 2012 a 3-member ethics panel ruled Kellett violated seven Bar Rules. In unusually strong language, the panel described Kellett’s conduct as “unexcusable,” and recommended suspension of her license to practice law.

Vladek Filler was victimized numerous times, SAVE believes. First, by an abusive wife. Second, by a domestic violence agency that ignored his pleas for help. Third, by a false accusation of marital rape. And fourth, by a zealous prosecutor.

And if Justice Gorman follows through with her proposed plan, Filler will be victimized again, this time by a complacent Supreme Court judge.

“By imposing a 30-day suspension on Kellett and then suspending her own suspension, Justice Ellen Gorman has engaged in a form of legal double-talk,” notes SAVE spokesperson Sheryle Hutter. “Justice will not be served by allowing prosecutor Mary Kellett to continue her ideological crusade against innocent citizens of Maine.”

Stop Abusive and Violent Environments is a victim-advocacy organization working for evidence-based solutions to domestic violence and sexual assault: