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Pat Kelly Trial: Key points

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During the closing statements, both sides gave their final words. The defense claimed the prosecution could not prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Kelly had stolen any money. They could prove he had not maintained documentation as he should have, but that in itself is not a criminal offense. They could not prove that Kelly had not used the money to pay confidential informants. ***Scott Wood, Kelly’s lawyer, claimed the charges were only brought against Kelly because he was a big personality and his office had been operating in political tension because of it.

“Sheriff Kelly is a big personality. He has his own idea of what he wanted to do. He wanted to clean up the sheriff’s office. He wanted to modernize the sheriff’s office. He wanted to go after drug dealers. He wanted to do it loud, and he wanted to do it very public. He wanted to provide his men with the resources they needed to do their job. In doing this, he made himself a target,”  he said.

Prosecutors summarized their case with the catchphrase “the truth never changes.”

“The truth never changes. It doesn’t have four different versions. It isn’t confusing. It isn’t misleading. It doesn’t show up for the first time in the middle of a trial. The truth never changes. It’s not hidden from a county auditor, from state auditor, from BCI. It’s not hidden from your own county. The truth never changes,” Prosecutor Melissa Schiffel said.

She also said they couldn’t prove he paid the confidential informants because his informants were dead. She also made clear that, according to Rex v. Smith, the jury can decide a verdict based on the likelihood the defendant committed the crimes.

“What are the chances that this money, from all these different accounts, were used for a proper public purpose? Use your common sense. Whenever he had access to cash, it’s gone. And that’s what the lack of documentation proves to you.”

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