Tomeka Hart, Roger Stone juror from Memphis, says she ‘stands with’ the prosecutors

Politics

Tomeka Hart in 2013

A juror on the Roger Stone trial said she wants to “stand up” for the four prosecutors who withdrew from the case in response to their sentencing recommendation being changed by Department of Justice leadership.

Tomeka Hart is a former school board member for Memphis City Schools and Democratic candidate for office. She now lives in Washington, D.C., according to her Facebook profile.

Hart said she had remained silent about the case for months out of concern for her safety and “politicizing the matter.”

But the events this week led to her to post on her Facebook account that she “can’t keep quiet any longer.” A copy of the posting was shared with CNN. Hart confirmed to CNN that she wrote the post but did not want to discuss it further.

“I want to stand up for Aaron Zelinsky, Adam Jed, Michael Marando, and Jonathan Kravis — the prosecutors on the Roger Stone trial,” she wrote in the post that was shared with CNN. “It pains me to see the DOJ now interfere with the hard work of the prosecutors. They acted with the utmost intelligence, integrity, and respect for our system of justice.”

That prompted a tweet Thursday from President Donald Trump, referencing the foreperson of the Stone jury, Hart, and accusing her of bias.

Attorney General William Barr on Thursday criticized President Donald Trump for tweeting about Justice Department cases in an extraordinary defense of rank-and-file prosecutors in an interview with ABC News.

“To have public statements and tweets made about the department, about people in the department, our men and women here, about cases pending in the department and about judges before whom we have cases, make it impossible for me to do my job,” Barr said, “and to assure the courts and the prosecutors in the department that we’re doing our work with integrity.”

On Tuesday, all four federal prosecutors who took the case against Stone to trial withdrew after top Justice Department officials undercut them and disavowed the government’s recommended sentence against Stone.

The mass withdrawal was set in motion on Monday when the prosecutors from the DC US Attorney’s office, who are Justice Department employees, wrote in a filing that Stone should be sentenced seven to nine years in prison after he was convicted on seven charges last year that came out of Mueller’s investigation, including lying to Congress and witness tampering.

In the revised sentencing recommendation, filed Tuesday afternoon, federal prosecutors asked for Stone to still be sentenced to prison, but said it should be “far less” than the office had asked for a day earlier. The prosecutors declined to say how much time in prison Stone should serve.

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