User-agent: * Allow: / Legal news, political opinion, Satire, and lawyer thinking by Tim Paynter, Attorney at Law: Utah Republican Majority Leader Kevin Garn Accused of Molesting 15 year old

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Sunday, March 14, 2010

Utah Republican Majority Leader Kevin Garn Accused of Molesting 15 year old

Former LDS sunday school teacher
accused of molesting girl
while naked in a hot tub

Utah Republican House Majority Leader, Kevin Garn, disgraced the Republican Party and may have dodged a lengthy prison sentence by his late admission of exploits in a hot tub 25 years ago with an under-age girl.
An arrogant Kevin Garn in last minutes of 2010 session from Desert News photo

If allegations by victim Cheryl Maher are true, Garn might be getting out of prison about now for child molestation, rather than merely resigning as Utah’s most powerful party leader.

Garn used the closing minutes of the 2010 legislative session in an attempt to garner sympathy for himself. He announced he had paid Cheryl $150,000 smacks to shut up about the facts during his 2002 bid for Congress.  Despite his large investment, Maher came forward anyway.

If Garn’s story is true, he used as little judgment invoking his powerful position in the Republican Congress to make his cry for pity as he did 25 years ago by sitting naked in a hot tub with a little girl who also just happened to be naked. In the alternative, his pretended regrets about the event were as deceitful as were his claims ‘nothing happened.”  Desert News
Cheryl Maher as she
supplied to Desert News

"It usually is an adult's fault when preacher and student get naked and go hot tubbing"
Garn said, “Although no sexual contact happened, it was clearly inappropriate and it was all my fault.”

This must have been a revelation to someone besides Garn, though one wonders whom. It usually is an adult’s fault when preacher and student get naked together and go hot tubbing.

According to Cheryl, Majority Leader Garn is lying about just sitting together naked.  In interviews with various Salt Lake City newspapers, Cheryl said she and millionaire Garn had a long term relationship that started when she was working for Garn at the Pegasus record store which he owned. Pegasus sells books on tapes and other products to truck stops. Worse, Cheryl said she first knew legislator Garn when he was her fourth grade LDS Sunday school teacher!

"I remember one night before the Pegasus store was having its grand opening, we were working late to get ready, and Kevin was there and kept watching me," she said.

Apparently, Garn had a fancy for kids, if what Cheryl says is true.

“(He would) stare at me and talk to me.“

Next came lunches and shopping trips a common ploy with sexual predators.

"'I don't have a suit'  he said 'You don't need one'"

"Then there was a day when he took me to Salt Lake, and he stopped and got alcohol, and we ended up at this hot-tub place on State Street. I was scared. I said, 'I don't have a suit.'

He said, 'You don't need one,' "

We don’t know what went on at the hot tub place and Cheryl prefers to leave out the gory details of her alleged sexual relationship. Suffice it to say, if Garn didn’t put the moves on Cheryl at the hot tub joint, then he did as the affair grew over time, according to Cheryl.

"I remember when we left (the hot tub joint) feeling very weird, and I wasn't sure if I was having an affair or what was going on. I was confused,"         
  She is not clapping

Later, her co-workers teased her about having an affair.

Desert News

According to reports, Cheryl said "He and I had a relationship for months. I fell head over heels for him. I did love him. He wrapped me up and infected me."

At the very least, Garn has not shown the back bone he pretends to possess. If the victim had not come forward, Garn would be all grins during the legislative session wind-up. No one would know the difference.

Garn says in his statement,

“When I was running for Congress (in 2002), (Cheryl) decided to bring this incident to the attention of the media…at her demand, I paid her $150, that this issue is coming up again, it is apparent to me that this payment was also a mistake.”

The truth is, according to Garn himself, when Cheryl started speaking to the media Garn approached her. The original offer was $20,000. They finally settled on $150 big one’s.

========== Not clapping very hard

Garn says he made a mistake paying Cheryl the dough. The question is, what was the mistake? Was it the payment of hush money as a sort of bribe? Or was it the girl squealed anyway, even after paying out $150,000?

“Today, she went to the press and reported all of these events.” Garn said in his statement.

There was plenty of double talk to be sure. First, Garn said he paid the girl the $150,000 hush money to ‘help her heal’. Then Garn insists he would have made the same decision even if it were not an election year. He also said he got into a hot tub naked with a girl half his age. An honest statement is, no matter the half life, he got into the hot tub naked with an under aged girl.

"This is something I should have done back in 2002"

Meanwhile, nothing in the Garn statement was designed to help Cheryl heal. Instead, it was all poor Garn.

“There will be a story. I expect to suffer public humiliation and embarrassment, but I also want you to know that I cannot allow one foolish mistake to continue to shadow my life. At this point, I would rather be open and honest about this than continue to live in fear…this is something I should have done back in 2002.”

The Majority Leader stated further, “I also wish to publicly apologize to this young lady for this incident.”

If the apology is sincere, one must wonder why Garn regrets paying the $150 G’s to a person he damaged and why she had to make the announcement he should have made, by his own admission, in 2002.

"It is hard to believe the mere 'sitting naked' is enough to warrant payment of $150,000"

Speaking of $150K, that is a lot of bread! How many legislators, pastors and perhaps even presidents have sat naked in a natural hot spring next to an under-aged youth in the process of bathing? Yet, as far as anyone knows, nothing was paid. It is hard to believe the mere ‘sitting naked’ is enough to warrant such a healthy sum. Isn’t it more likely, Garn was afraid the rest of the story would come out if he made the ’nothing happened’ claim? Isn’t that why he paid the big bucks to a person he made feel so small?
I guess he is clapping
Garn finishes up his confession, “I have tried my best to serve my constituents in a way that brings honor to them and makes this great State better than the way I found it. I hope to continue to do that.”

Cheryl Maher said, "I hope Kevin knows I never meant to hurt anyone, but the truth had to come out," in a Saturday morning phone interview with the Salt Lake Tribune.  If he will work with women in crisis or the mentally ill "he can turn this thing around to something positive. ... He could really help a lot of people," she said.
Hot tub for rent
$150,000 for two hours!
Includes 15 Year Old Naked Model
No Suit=No Touching=No Ask=No Tell

Model in pic is not the one you get, Vern.

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert indicated this resignation should not take away from the good done by this year's legislative session, according to the Tribune. 

Republican Party Chairman Dave Hansen heard Garn was to be a quitter before the anouncement was made, according to the Tribune. 

"It's very said that these things happen," Hansen said.   "It's a tragedy, not only for him, but for the girl and for the political system."

Anyone can make a mistake, although sex with an under-age youth, if it happened, is a pretty big mistake.  Kev is getting crucified because not only did he sit in a hot tub naked with a naked 15 year old, he paid her to shut up about it 20 years later.  Then he dissed her by saying he should not have paid it in the first place! 

This year’s Utah legislature championed law-maker ethics and Garn was often a leader of the cause. All the while, who could have known, Utah Republican Senate Majority Leader Kevin Garn was covering up sexual molestation with a 15 year old girl?  Garn denies it, of course.  If Garn had been prosecuted before the statute of limitations expired and found guilty he would probably be required to register as a sexual offender. That is something most voters would definitely not favor.

Justice may be done anyway. Kevin Garn failed to disclose the $150K payment he made to Cheryl Maher on his Federal Election Commission Report. He may have violated the law, and if so, justice may still prevail in the case of an alleged child molester turned Utah State Republican Senate Majority Leader.

Maybe this kid has it right...  Let's hope Kevin's political career is exterminated and he goes back to life as an ordinary millionaire, between 20M and 90M.  We need to regenerate politicians with ethics!

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