Foundation for Litigant Parity

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                203-692-5027

1.     Candidate for Governor Lee Whitnum is asking federal Judge Shay to intervene in the deposition of Judge Jane Emons and Assistant Chief State’s Prosecutor John Whalen. In the Whitnum v. Woodbridge case (3:17-cv-01362), Whitnum filed a REQUEST FOR ADJUDICATION OF DISCOVERY OR DEPOSITION DISPUTE, on April 17, 2018. Whitnum is requesting that federal Judge Shay allow courtroom deposition in this case.

2.    Whitnum described pertinent background to the case. “In 2012, I was 52-years-old, retired from politics, a teacher and housewife with no priors. I thought I was retired. I thought I’d spend the remainder of my infirmed husband’s days, drinking hot cocoa, watching old movies, gardening, caring for our animals, and cooking lovely meals. Then Judge Jane Emons destroyed my life: Judge Emons empowered those who had fraudulently conveyed my husband’s $5 million portfolio, she violated my rights by statute to keep me from my husband and so railroaded us into divorce without even a private conversation allowed with my husband. She had me unlawfully arrested over-and-over again, which smeared my good name. Further, Judge Emons was politically motivated because she does not agree with my political views regarding Israel.” said Whitnum. “What is amazing is how many of the other judges knowingly followed her lead in violating my implicit, stated rights.”

3.    Whitnum is seeking judicial intervention in the depositions of the two powerful state players, Emons and Whalen, about the events of the night in question (June 22, 2013) and alleged incident that has caused more than five legal cases and five years of ongoing litigation in Whitnum’s quest for justice for her and her husband.

4.    In Whitnum’s motion filed today she claims that she needs judicial intervention by Federal Judge Shay to depose Judge Emons and John Whalen, because Whitnum is afraid. “I believe the long-term friends Emons and Whalen have the power to potentially violate laws to hurt me. I therefore need a legal deposition in a safe location with no margin for tricks or some phony arrest. I have literally been through hell with these unlawful players in the State of Connecticut.”

5.    Another reason that Whitnum is asking for Judge Shay’s intervention is that, according to Whitnum, “Judge Jane Emons was wholly unresponsive to the legislature during the February 16, 2018 reconfirmation hearing,” said Whitnum. The link is to the Emons’ testimony:

The vote on Emons reconfirmation by the legislature is still pending. There have been questions raised about the performance level of Judge Emons in the court room.

6.    During the February 16, 2018 hearing, when questioned by Rep. Minnie Gonzales about the events of June 22, 2013, Emons pretended she knew nothing. Rep. Minnie Gonzales pointed out that despite more than 20 judges present for their re-nomination hearing on February 16, 2018, the mountains of complaints were about Judge Jane Emons. “I received email after email and all were complaining about you,” said Rep. Minnie Gonzales to Judge Jane Emons during testimony. Gonzales is referring to the many people, not just Whitnum, who have been hurt by Emons and who have complained about her. Emons has received the most judicial complaints from citizens than any other judge in Connecticut history. 

7.    In light of Emons’ memory lapses during the reconfirmation hearing, Whitnum in her application informed Judge Shay that she will be very prepared as she is fully expecting Jane Emons to be non-responsive. “I need Judge Shay to compel Emons, under threat of imprisonment, to answer the questions. “I don’t want a repeat of Emons’ lapse of memory,” said Whitnum. The Attorney for Emons and Whalen is Philip Miller of the Attorney General’s office. The attorney for the Town of Woodbridge is Karsten & Tallberg, LLC of Rocky Hill (specifically Andrew Glass)

8.   There is also the somewhat lengthy background and history of the case that is crucial to understanding the case: Judge Jane Emons claims Whitnum rang her bell and ran at 1:38 am on June 22, 2013. Whitnum has always claimed it is a complete lie orchestrated by Emons in order to get a protective order against Whitnum. Whitnum states, “I did not drive two hours north on the eve of my birthday to ring a bell and run. If I have something to say to someone I say it to their face. What do I gain by ringing a bell and running?” said Whitnum. “It is not true.” 

9.    In the Woodbridge Police Report (annexed below) Emons claimed that she saw no one but she demanded Whitnum’s arrest by name. Despite Emons’ demand that Whitnum be arrested, in July 2013 the Woodbridge Police refused to arrest Whitnum, the Connecticut State Police also refused to arrest Whitnum, and finally Emons called upon her old friend assistant Chief State’s Prosecutor John Whalen of the Statewide Prosecution Bureau who wrote a report and got an arrest warrant. Whitnum has claimed her phone records on Whalen’s report were altered. 

10.    “I’ve stated all along that my true phone records, obtained via federal subpoena from Sprint Corporation, are different than Whalen’s report #2013-0213,” said Whitnum who has accused Whalen in court documents of altering her phone records on his report in order to get the arrest. “I didn’t even know the circumstances of the charges, until months later when Whalen dropped the stalking charge in open court and that was when I learned the ring-and-run at 1:38 am on June 22, 2013. I was shocked. The stalking charge was dropped but the protective order remained.” 

11.    Whitnum, naïve of criminal procedure, was never told the nature of the charges and made assumptions. ”I thought the new charges including “stalking” sprang from a call I made to Emons on May 15, 2013 when I called to beg Emons to allow me access to my infirmed husband. At that point Emons had cruelly kept me from him with no contact for 13 months.” 

12.    On July 16, 2012 Emons had unethically quashed Whitnum’s right to conciliation with her husband who was being kept from her by his adult children. Whitnum had a signed Order by Robert Villacis of the clerk but Emons quashed it anyway. “I fought for 13 months and this cruel woman would not grant any right I had to due process. I was distraught that night of May 15, 2013 as I believed I’d be railroaded into divorce without a conversation with my husband,” said Whitnum. “So, I called every Emons on looking to speak with her as I was inconsolable.” 

13.    That tearful call got Whitnum a breach of peace arrest and paid the $85 fine. Emons’ demanded more charges and a protective order but Emons was denied by State Police Officer Thomas Keily of the Connecticut State Police. “I’ve never denied making the call,” said Whitnum, “But her denial of my stated rights, that I can prove, drove me to it.”

14.    “Officer Keily refused to press more charges claiming that a tearful 30-second call merited only 'breach of peace’”. “I am grateful to the Connecticut State Police for standing tough against Emons on several occasions,” said Whitnum. But Whitnum believes that since Emons was refused a protective order and more charges by the State Police, that a month later, Emons allegedly staged the ring-and-run. “Emons was apparently angry at not getting her way,” said Whitnum. 

15.    Whitnum was never told the reason for the stalking charge or for the protective order until she was in open court with John Whalen 8 months later. “I thought all along that the stalking and the Protective Order were from the phone call. I was kept in the dark.”

16.    In open Court on April 4, 2014 Whalen dropped the stalking charge and that was when Whitnum learned it about the alleged ring-and-run on June 22, 2013 at 1:38 am.. “When I learned that the charges were from a ring-and-run I was shocked, I never thought they’d go as far as to create a scenario. Despite the fact that Ms. Conoplask, who reports to Whalen, had stated months earlier on the record in Bridgeport Court, that she was giving me court documents, none of the them talked about the circumstances of the ring-and-run. I point blank asked as stalking involves ‘lying in wait’ and how is a phone call ‘lying in wait?’ Of course they ignored me, and I later learned why,” said Whitnum.

17.    “Since months had passed I had to rack my brain to remember where I had been. I recalled that I was in Manhattan at a bar/restaurant on Amsterdam Avenue in the early morning of June 22, 2013, the day before my birthday. I also remembered I called my roommate several times to make sure my cat was in,” said Whitnum. “What is scary is that if Emons had picked any other night to allegedly set me up I’d be in jail now with no alibi.” 

18.    Whitnum next set out to try to get her own phone records but she was denied subpoena four times by the judges in Norwalk Criminal Court. Whitnum next filed a federal case and obtained a federal subpoena for her phone records which was successful and proved her allegation that Whalen had altered her phone records on his report. 

19.    Federal Judge Underhill in that federal case refused to honor Whitnum’s injunction that named defendant Whalen be ordered to bring to trial or drop the charges. “That was at the 20th court appearance and Underhill unconscionably denied my 6th Amended right to fair and speedy trial. Underhill was clearly on the side of the State players; he refused to act. He is as unlawful as they come,” stated Whitnum, indicating the judge has 15 complaints of judicial misconduct against him. 

20.    In case 3:15-CV-0959 Whitnum filed an EMERGENCY MOTION for Injunction on July 27, 2015 but Judge Underhill refused to rule on that Emergency Injunction. ”Well what is the point of having a 6th Amendment Constitutional right to a fair and speedy trial if you can’t get a federal judge to enforce it against a named defendant?” asks Whitnum. “Underhill allowed Whalen to torture me.” As Whalen continued to drag Whitnum into court every month for another 20 court appearances. Whitnum is now hoping for better luck with federal Judge Shay. 

21.    Two years into the “torture of endless court appearances” Whitnum was still being kept from her own husband and still being dragged into criminal court every month. She had been kept from her teaching job for two years at this time as with pending charges you cannot teach and ultimately she was kept from a teaching job for four years. “Four years of salary was lost and John Whalen was apprised all along,” said Whitnum. 

22.    In August 2015 Whitnum was hit with another blow as she was bizarrely charged with violating that same protective order (two counts) when her assistant mailed two motions from the new case to Emons . “It was insane, there was no active protective orders at that time, and who gets arrested for sending court document to a defendant in a case – it is required by statute. Who?,” said Whitnum who admits she had instructed her assistant to mail copies. “I was shocked when I learned there was a new warrant,” said Whitnum.

23.    “Not only was Whalen’s protective order bogus because it was based on false, unproven charges that my phone records could prove never happened. But, the bogus protective order had already expired,” said Whitnum as protective orders are only good for one year when an end date or end circumstance is not written. 

24.    Whitnum had had the original protective order modified by Judge Arnold on October 23, 2013 at the prodding of the State Police, who had been repeatedly called by Emons between July 2013 and September 2013. On several occasion, during that time, Emons had demanding the State Police arrest Whitnum every time she walked into the courthouse. 

25.    “The Connecticut State Police ignored Emons demands, instead they called me in September 2013 and told me to have the protective order modified to allow access to the courthouse so that Emons would get off their backs and stop calling them . So I did,” said Whitnum who filed the Motion to Modify the Protective Order in Oct. 2013.

26.    Whitnum claims during that October 23, 2013 hearing Judge Arnold was perplexed stating “madam of course you can walk into the courthouse” to which Whitnum replied “yeah right tell it to Jane Emons. “ None-the-less, Judge Arnold modified the protective order on October 23, 2013 to allow access into the courthouse again leaving the end date open. “By leaving the end date open on the modified protective order, according to statute, the both protective orders had

expired by October 23, 2014,” said Whitnum who claims she was very careful about the rules. 

27.    At her arrest in August 2015, Whitnum claims in court documents, that she informed the Woodbridge Police when she turned herself in, that there was no active protective order. Still the Woodbridge Police, at Emons insistence, arrested Whitnum and Whitnum was suddenly facing 14 years in jail and that is the gravamen of the Whitnum v. Woodbridge case. 

28.     “I literally paced every night for years. I paced for 14 months with no contact with my own husband before Schofield finally produced him a month before the railroaded divorce. Whose marriage can survive 14 months apart with zero contact. During that time I did not know if my husband was dead, alive, strapped down, drugged, or grieving for me. No one came to my aid, not any state employee, not the Darien Police who I called upon over and over again,” said Whitnum. “Next I’m pacing for 17 months believing that I will be railroaded into jail for 14 years for a crime I did not commit. It was hell, no one would reel in Whalen: not the Governor, not Kevin Kane, not Jim Jepson. No one.” 

29.    “I’ve been smeared and tortured, as people believe if there is a protective order and a violation, it must be valid. It was not,” said Whitnum. “God was with me, I could have easily been railroaded into jail by Emons and Whalen in the same way I had been railroaded into divorce, without conciliation which was my right and without even one private conversation with the man I married,” said Whitnum. “How can we continue to allow such unlawfulness in this state,” asks Whitnum. “Every right I thought I had: the right to due process, the right to speedy trial, the right to an attorney, the right to present evidence of your innocence and have it heard. We have no rights here and there is no justice. We can’t live like this,” said Whitnum. 

30.    Whitnum claims that the biggest travesty in all of it was that the Judges knowingly kept her from her infirmed husband until his death –four and a half years after his disappearance. “We were together in our Stamford marital residence when we learned about the fraudulent conveyance of my husband’s $5 million portfolio into a trust controlled by his children. My husband went to retrieve his art work and I never saw him alone again. He managed to get to a phone on June 18, 2012 and he said he loved me 7 times, and then his phone was disconnected and I never spoke to him in private again. He died four and a half years later.” 

31.    Judge Emons unlawful denial of conciliation, my right by statute, on July 16, 2012 could have prevented all of it,” said Whitnum. “I was kept from my infirmed husband by Family Relation Staff and the Family Court judges seemingly doing Emons’ bidding.”

32.    Five family court judges denied due process of Whitnum’s husband’s portfolio. “The financials where my right, and the only bargaining chip I had with the powerful adult children,” said Whitnum. “The judges in the denial of due process of my rights took away the only bargaining chip I had to get my husband home.” Those judges were: Jane Emons, Mary Louise Schofield, Sybil Richards, Donna Heller, and Lynda Munro.

33.    Whitnum said all manner of state employees and state agencies were complicit as she called upon the Long-term Care Ombudsman's office and the Department of Aging, Ms. Gerundo- Murkette, Pamela Toohey. “No one would help. They all ignored me,” said Whitnum. 

34.    Whitnum filed two injunctions to try to get mail into her husband, one with Judge Genuario while she was still married to Baker. “It was denied and Genuario lied in his order stating it sounded like Baker was getting his mail in direct contradiction to the witness at the hearing, Marge Aid, who said he wasn’t,” said Whitnum. “Of course it was ignored.” Judge Arnold later also denied Injunction for Whitnum to see her husband. "For the choice to be ours, and not third parties," said Whitnum.

35.    `“The depth of injustice and judicial cruelty in the State of Connecticut knows no bounds,” said Whitnum who also filed four Motion for Telephone conversation, all were denied by the judges including Taggart Adams and Judge Mottolese. 

36.    Whitnum appealed her divorce to the U.S. Supreme Court (No. 16-8757) “people should not be kept from each other and railroaded into divorce,” but the case was never heard. “I’m not surprised, the U.S Supreme Court only hears one in 500 cases,” said Whitnum. “What a waste of six years of my life. The judges and state employees and agencies destroyed my marriage and much more in their multiple failures to do it by the book, allow due process, foster speedy trial, and many other purposeful ignoring of my stated rights.. There is no enforcement at the highest levels of power in the State of Connecticut – a lawless state run amok.” 

37.    Whitnum states that she has formulated 15 steps to clean up the judiciary and that her plan is to fix the system. “As governor, I will establish much needed systems – AND enforcement. In the new Connecticut judicial system, you either do it by the book or you don’t get to do it at all.”
Lee Whitnum, Candidate for Governor