HOUSTON – Keeping a public formal accountable is a unusual sight in Houston.
When regulation enforcement makes an arrest resulting in a conviction, headlines are built and there is a perception that anyone is instantly spending a price for their criminal wrongdoing.
Even so, that is not usually the situation.
KPRC 2 has been monitoring 1 case in point for months where by the convicted official has ongoing to stay existence to the fullest, just about two a long time right after coming into a responsible plea.
“It’s disappointing, it is troubling,” reported former federal prosecutor Michael Wynne.
The federal case will involve previous Houston Unbiased School District Board of Schooling president, Rhonda Skillern-Jones, who entered a guilty plea back in Oct. 2021 for conspiracy tied to bribes in the district.
So, what has Skillern-Jones been executing due to the fact her conviction?
Well, this yr on your own she has visited Cabo San Lucas, Mexico for a birthday celebration, the West African country of Ghana, and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates – to celebrate one of her son’s graduation and a further son’s birthday, in accordance to courtroom requests and images posted throughout her travels.
As to when Skillern-Jones is going to federal prison…
That was terminated in April of previous calendar year in accordance to federal lawful data.
“She need to be undertaking a entire large amount for the govt in some other scenario,” stated Wynne.
As for a new sentencing date…
That has still to be identified according to court docket documents. When KPRC 2 Investigates reached out to the circumstance manager for U.S. District Decide Andrew Hanen for some clarity on a new day, the case manager instructed KPRC 2 Investigates, “When the courtroom resets any listening to in this case, it will be on the docket.”
We did depart messages for Skillern-Jones’ legal professional but he did not return individuals phone calls.
U.S. Lawyer Alamdar Hamdani admitted he was “not familiar” with the circumstance, but did have a information for Houstonians. ”The concept to Houstonians is this, community corruption will not be tolerated in this metropolis or everywhere in the Southern District of Texas,” mentioned Hamdani.
We asked Wynne if Houstonians should be concerned that an individual has pleaded guilty and is not currently being held accountable.
His reaction was straightforward. “This is the community servant who has admitted to doing some thing improper, who now needs to be held accountable and not live lifetime as if almost nothing took place.”
Skillern-Jones is going through up to five yrs in jail and a probable greatest high-quality of $250,000 in accordance to a press launch issued by the Office of Justice to announce her conviction.
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