Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Grand Old Police Blotter: Impose The Maximum Sentence Edition

Usually these Blotter items involve a Republican accepting a bribe or trying to blow a cop in the crapper for a Hamilton, and good juvenile fun is had at the Republican's expense. This item is not one of those:

Michael Flory, a 32-year-old attorney from Jackson, Mich., pleaded guilty to sexual battery on the day he was to stand trial for rape.

The teary-eyed college student he overpowered in a downtown hotel room gasped and dabbed her eyes as Flory replied to Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Peter Corrigan's question, "Are you indeed guilty?"

"Sure - yeah," Flory said.

Corrigan set sentencing for Sept. 13. Flory faces a sentence that ranges from probation to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.


The plea bargain, she said, doesn't include any suggestion of leniency, and the state will seek incarceration. She also said she hopes to present evidence of several "other incidents of sexual misconduct" in which Flory took advantage of vulnerable young women.

The victim, who is 22, declined to speak after Flory's guilty plea.

She and some supporters lamented when the incident became public last winter that Flory and his followers within the Republican organization had been smearing her reputation in retaliation for accusing Flory of rape. Skutnik said she found that to be true.

"People were using every opportunity to try to trash her, on Web sites or whatever," the prosecutor said. "He's been running around telling everybody what a piece of trash she is, so she was very happy to see him plead guilty."

The defense can say little until sentencing, Hilow said.

"He would just like to put this in the past for everybody," the defense attorney said.

Flory gained some notoriety at age 18 when he gave a televised speech to the Republican National Convention in the Houston Astrodome in 1992. The Michigan Young Republicans' Web site once hailed him as "one of the rising stars of GOP politics in America" and declared that "Mike has earned a great name for himself."

Flory, the victim and other members of Michigan's delegation to the national Young Republicans convention were partying in the Warehouse District last July 6, police and prosecutors said. The victim became so intoxicated that she headed back to her hotel room. Flory escorted her.

But when she lay down to sleep, he "violently forced several sex acts upon her," Skutnik said.

Nitpicker has the details on Mr. Flory, who is a member of the Michigan Federalist Society and a Michigan Young Leader for John McCain.

While Flory spends the next five years in prison, God willing, I hope someone shines a spotlight on "the followers within the Republican organization had been smearing her reputation in retaliation for accusing Flory of rape." I'd be happy to publish any verifiable information identifying those lowlifes. (Not, of course, their addresses/contact information.)

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