Legal analyst: 'Damning' indictment against McDonnell - NBC12.com - Richmond, VA News

Legal analyst: 'Damning' indictment against McDonnell

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RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -

We took the 43 page indictment to a legal expert to see just how this case might play out in federal court.

"It's the first time that a Governor in Virginia has been indicted," said VCU media law and ethics professor Bill Oglesby. "We're not a state that is used to this kind of thing. We're not Illinois. We're not Louisiana."

Oglesby reviewed the 43 page indictment. He notes it lacks a smoking gun or some sort of concrete proof that Governor Bob McDonnell engaged in any illegal activity.

"And we think of proof in terms of 100 percent," said Oglesby. "We rarely achieve 100 percent. That's why we talk about guilt beyond a reasonable doubt."

The thick indictment lists 14 felony counts and reveals emails and exchanges with staff that are intriguingly detailed.

"If what they say is true in this indictment," said Oglesby. "It's a very damning document."

"Is this an open and shut case?" we asked Oglesby.

"I don't think we can say that," said Oglesby. "No. I think we have to keep in mind we have only read one side. The tough part is to reserve judgement and to actually see the evidence. Let them go to court. Let him have his day in court."

Gov. McDonnell has apologized and maintained all along he has done nothing illegal. Prosecutors must now try and prove otherwise.

"Unquestionably," said Oglesby. "When you bring a case like this you've got to have all of your T's crossed and your I's dotted because of the nature of what you're doing"

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