January 21, 2010
Like this article?
Join our email list:
Stay up to date with the latest headlines via email.
An ethics complaint lodged against former Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline reveals that the ex AG engaged in unethical and deeply disturbing behavior in his crusade against Dr. Tiller, the late-term abortion provider murdered last May. Among the most disturbing charges is the accusation that Kline sent staff to record the license plate numbers of visitors to Dr. Tiller's clinic and subpoenaed the guest list from a hotel used by patients. The Kansas City Star lists some of the other complaints against Kline:
•Ignored warnings by the Supreme Court not to talk about the case by discussing it on Bill O’Reilly’s Fox News show.
•Mishandled redacted medical files by storing them in an open garage, a private vehicle and, for 40 days, the dining room of an investigator. The complaint also criticizes Kline’s staff for copying the records at a Topeka Kinko’s on Kline’s last day as attorney general.
When investigators brought up the issue, Kline said the records were kept “under lock and key.”
•Misstated the whereabouts of the medical records. Kline took some copies of the Tiller records with him when he became district attorney, but denied doing so before a Shawnee County judge and the Supreme Court.
•Selectively presented information to a Johnson County grand jury investigating Planned Parenthood.
•Relied on data that Kline’s staff knew to be flawed to justify the investigation before a judge.
Two of Kline’s top deputies — Stephen Maxwell, former assistant attorney general, and Eric Rucker, chief of staff — were the subject of similar ethics complaints last fall. Maxwell’s ethics hearing is next month.