WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Analyst: Ex-Exec's Testimony Attempts To Humanize Jonnie Williams

Play associated audio

In Virginia, a close associate to businessman Jonnie Williams is adding dimension to the relationship between him and former Republican Governor Bob McDonnell.

Paul Perito, a former executive of Star Scientific, testified that he would have stopped Jonnie Williams' gift-giving if he had known about it at the time. On the stand today, Perito recalled how Williams called him sobbing after federal and state investigators first interviewed him.

"They want to rehabilitate Jonnie Willaims a little bit," says Rich Kelsey, assistant dean of the George Mason Law School. He says prosecutors called Perito to the stand in an attempt to humanize the government's star witness, who has been granted immunity for his testimony. "They want to make him look like he undertook some activities he regrets. That he's a little more human than this guy who was just trying to ruthlessly buy access."

Perito also testified that he intervened to prevent Maureen McDonnell from taking a high-paying position on the corporate board of Star Scientific, the nutritional supplement company that was seeking scientific studies from the government.


'Better Call Saul' And 'The Great American Dream Machine' Shine As DVD Box Sets

TV critic David Bianculli shares his enthusiasm for two newly released DVD box sets: season one of Better Call Saul and a four-DVD set of the 1970s PBS variety show, The Great American Dream Machine.

Sweet Name Of Kids' Clinic Gives Some People Heartburn

The Krispy Kreme Challenge Children's Specialty Clinic gets its name from a student-run charity race in Raleigh, N.C., that has already raised $1 million for kids. Still, some find the name unhealthy.

60 Years Later, What Can Activists Learn From The Montgomery Bus Boycott?

Decades after Rosa Parks changed history, a new generation faces the challenge of remaking the civil rights movement for the next century. What can they learn from the past to build for the future?

Someday A Helicopter Drone May Fly Over Mars And Help A Rover

NASA is building a 2-pound helicopter drone that would help guide the vehicle on the Red Planet's surface. That way, the rover wouldn't need to wander as much to find its way around.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.