In May we reported on the first and only time that the Maine Board of Overseers of the Bar has filed a complaint against a prosecutor. The complaint is against Hancock County prosecutor Mary Kellett, and was filed with the state Supreme Judicial Court. Kellett has worked in the Hancock County District Attorney’s Office for more than 10 years and has prosecuted more than 10,000 cases.
Kellett is alleged to have violated multiple bar rules when prosecuting a Gouldsboro man in 2008 and 2009, including withholding a 911 call recording and witness statements from the defense and making improper arguments at trial by drawing attention to missing evidence that she knew had been suppressed by the Court.
The Portland Press Herald reports that prior to a hearing in Cumberland County Superior Court on Monday, Kellet’s lawyers reached an agreement with the Board of Overseers to prevent her suspension, which the Board had previously recommended. In exchange for her being willing to acknowledge her wrongdoing at the hearing, the Board would not suspend her license. Instead she would undergo training.“Of all the cases, one of them resulted in a bar complaint, and that’s this case,” Fisher said. “I don’t think any fair-minded person should judge the fairness of attorney Kellett by the snapshot of this one case.”
Kellet said at the hearing: “I regret the harm my mistakes caused. While I did not intentionally violate the bar rules, my actions did violate the bar rules.”
Last year, a panel of the Board of Overseers found that Kellet had not only committed the alleged misconduct but would, by her own testimony, likely “repeat this unfairly prejudicial conduct.”
The Supreme Court Justice hearing the case this week, Ellen Gorman, said she will likely impose the recommendation at the end of the week after reviewing it further.
UPDATE: TribTown reports that a 30 day suspension has been imposed on Kellet through an agreement with the Board of Overseers, but the suspension will not go into effect unless Kellet fails to complete the previously agreed upon training.
See a 2 minute news story on the case with footage from the hearing below: