New Jersey prosecutors on Friday said they would not pursue criminal misconduct charges against Governor Chris Christie in connection with the “Bridgegate” scandal.
The Office of the Bergen County Prosecutor said in a letter to a local judge it did not have sufficient evidence to prove allegations that Christie knew about a plot to close lanes at the George Washington Bridge in 2013 in order to punish a local mayor for failing to endorse Christie’s re-election bid.
“The reason is simple, but compelling – that charge cannot be proven beyond a reasonable doubt,” the letter said.
Bill Brennan, a retired firefighter and activist who announced he would run for governor this year, filed the citizen complaint against Christie last September.
Two former Christie allies were convicted last year of orchestrating the lane closure plot, and U.S. prosecutors introduced evidence at trial suggesting the governor was at least aware of the scheme. Christie has steadfastly denied that he knew about the closures at the time.
Roy McGeady, a municipal judge in Fort Lee, had found probable cause to allow the case against Christie to proceed after a hearing at which Brennan testified. Christie’s lawyer was not permitted to argue or cross-examine, McGeady said, because the governor was not a defendant until probable cause was established.
Bergen County Superior Court Judge Bonnie Mizdol rejected Christie’s subsequent request to toss the complaint outright. But she agreed with both Christie’s lawyers and county prosecutors that McGeady erroneously denied the governor’s attorney an opportunity to participate.
The Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office said in the letter that citizen complaints typically allege minor crimes of which the complainant has personal knowledge. The letter said criminal misconduct was far outside that scope.
“In short, a matter of this gravity should not have been heard by a municipal court judge,” the letter said.
Brian Murray, a spokesman for Christie, applauded the decision on Friday.
“The Governor is gratified that the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office has ended this baseless fiasco began by Mr. Brennan and perpetuated by Judge McGeady,” Murray said in a statement. “It is right and appropriate that this injustice against the Governor is finally over.”
(Reporting by Curtis Skinner in San Francisco; Editing by Leslie Adler)
‘Why do we need camo in space’: Trump’s Space Force ridiculed for woodland camouflage uniforms
On Friday, the United States Space Force released an image of their new uniforms on Twitter.
The image shows a Battle Dress Uniform (BDU) for a four-star general in a woodland camouflage pattern, with a matching camo nametape.
However, many people were confused as to why the Space Force would use uniforms designed to blend in on earth.
Here's some of what people were saying:
Sorry for the question but why do we need camo in space?
BUSTED: National Archives caught doctoring exhibit to remove criticism of President Trump from women
The National Archives were caught editing an artifact from the Trump administration to remove criticism of the president, according to a bombshell new report in The Washington Post.
The newspaper reported on a "large color photograph" at the National Archives exhibit marking the centennial of women's suffrage.
"The 49-by-69-inch photograph is a powerful display. Viewed from one perspective, it shows the 2017 march. Viewed from another angle, it shifts to show a 1913 black-and-white image of a women’s suffrage march also on Pennsylvania Avenue. The display links momentous demonstrations for women’s rights more than a century apart on the same stretch of pavement. But a closer look reveals a different story," the newspaper noted.
Dershowitz is running a ‘bizarro defense’ of Trump: Harvard Law colleague says ‘Alan is just completely wacko’
Two of the most famous names associated with Harvard Law School had competing appearances on MSNBC on Friday.
It began when Alan Dershowitz, a professor emeritus, was interviewed MSNBC chief legal correspondent Ari Melber about his new role officially representing President Donald Trump during the Senate impeachment trial.
Dershowitz claimed that neither abuse of power nor obstruction of Congress count as "high crimes" under the constitution.
Professor Alan Dershowitz, who has also been associated with Harvard Law for five decades, was asked about Dershowitz's argument during an interview with Chris Hayes.