Al Watkins summoned before court, could be found in contempt for -

Al Watkins summoned before court, could be found in contempt for gag order violation

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AL Watkins. Credit: KMOV AL Watkins. Credit: KMOV

ST. LOUIS ( -- Judge Rex Burlison, who presided over both Eric Greitens’ invasion of privacy and computer tampering cases, has summoned attorney Al Watkins to appear before the court.

In the filing, the court alleges Watkins violated the gag order entered on April 10.

Watkins represented the ex-husband of the woman at the center of the invasion of privacy case and was outspoken both in interviews and through press releases.

The gag order applied to “all parties, attorneys, endorsed witnesses and their attorneys,” which covers both Watkins and his client, and said those covered by the order were “prohibited from making any public statements outside the courtroom that could interfere with a fair trial or prejudice the State or the defendant.”

The court cites an April 23 press release issued by Watkins in which he announced he would represent William Tisaby, the private investigator hired by the prosecutor’s office. In that release, the court alleges Watkins made several remarks criticizing the defense.

After a hearing regarding the press release, Watkins then conducted a press conference on the steps of the Carnahan Courthouse in which he discussed items relevant to the case. Among those talking points, the court alleges, were “How your client came to release the recordings and conversations, discussing the defendant’s conduct at issue; the effect of the defendant’s conduct on your client’s marriage and the receipt of your office of a large sum of money in cash.”

Watkins must appear before the court at 9 a.m. on July 13. If he is found to be in contempt of court for violating the gag order, he could be imprisoned, ordered to pay a fine, or both.

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