Far right blogger Clayton Kelly, an associate of cyberstalker Chuck C. Johnson in his crusade to smear Sen. Thad Cochran in Mississippi, has now been sentenced to 2 and a half years in prison for conspiring to take video of Cochran’s wife as she lay bedridden in a nursing home.
Kelly on Monday was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison for his role in the conspiracy to photograph the late wife of Sen. Thad Cochran as she lay in her nursing home bed suffering dementia. John Mary and Richard Sager had previously pleaded guilty and got no jail time in exchange for their cooperation. Another defendant, Richland attorney Mark Mayfield, committed suicide in June 2014, about a month after his arrest.
Kelly, an aspiring political blogger, was egged on by others to photograph Rose Cochran at St. Catherine’s Village nursing home. He used the image in a political hit piece video against Cochran, who was in the biggest political battle of his long career in his re-election battle against tea party challenger state Sen. Chris McDaniel.
Records released Monday show online correspondence between Kelly, other defendants and others about the scheme to create a video showing Cochran was having an affair with a longtime staffer while his wife languished in a nursing home.
From testimony from an investigator and records introduced Monday, it appears Mary, a former radio talk show host and tea party leader from Hattiesburg, was the ring leader in the plan to photograph Rose Cochran and make the hit piece video.
Chapman said it’s been his experience with armed robberies and other crimes that the smarter criminals talk the less intelligent ones into doing the actual crime.
“This defendant probably fits into that category,” Chapman said before sentencing Kelly.
Chuck C. Johnson offered a $2000 bounty for photos of Cochran’s wife in the nursing home (screenshots from Google’s cache):
… and continued to defend Clayton Kelly on Twitter for this disgusting scheme, even after he was arrested and charged:
Kelly’s wife apparently tried to talk him out of it:
The judge noted a statement from Kelly’s wife that “I told him it was a stupid idea and that it was just plain wrong,” and said he couldn’t sum it up any better.
He should have listened to her.
Note: Chuck Johnson was subpoenaed to appear before a grand jury in Mississippi in a related case, but ignored it.
Here are some of the creepy messages these right wing conspirators exchanged as they schemed to break into the nursing home: ‘Great Work, Ace Ventura’: Cochran Photo Case Messages.