Being 'Witness' May Not Keep Progress Kentucky Leader from Being Charged

Apr 15, 2013

One leader of a liberal Super PAC implicated in secretly recording a U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell campaign meeting is trying to backtrack from those accusations.

As first reported by WHAS 11, attorneys for Progress Kentucky Executive Director Shawn Reilly say he denies anything more than just being at McConnell's office when the recording happened.  Reilly’s attorneys are putting the blame on Curtis Morrison, the second Progress Kentucky staffer being accused. Reilly's attorneys have not returned multiple calls to them since Friday.  

Mother Jones magazine published the secret recording last week, and legal experts say it could be considered eavesdropping.  But Louisville criminal defense lawyer Brendan McLeod says just being a witness to eavesdropping is murky legal ground. 

McLeod says a conviction would depend on whether prosecutors could prove that Reilly had the intent or knew an illegal act was going to occur -- what he calls a "guilty mind."

Whether that’s the case is still unclear, but local Democratic Party member Jacob Conway says Reilly bragged to him about his role in the recording.