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Assemblyman's Former Girlfriend Uses New Evidence to Request Sentence Reduction

May 22, 2013 | Posted In Criminal Law - Criminal Law

Karen Golding, the former alleged lover of state Assemblyman Joseph Cryan, D-Union, is asking New Jersey judges to reduce her stalking sentence, based on new evidence that was recently made public. Golding, a former lobbyist, was arrested in 2006 for stalking Cryan, breaking into his car, and stalking Cryan's new girlfriend. Now, New Jersey criminal attorneys say that previously undisclosed e-mails between Cryan and Golding may have bearing on the severity of her sentence.

In 2010, Golding was sentenced to two years probation for the stalking charges, and a judge ordered her to serve 90 days in their Sheriff's Labor Assistance Program. She appealed the decision, but the state Supreme Court turned down her request. In seeking to reduce her sentence, Golding, 43, claims that new evidence should mitigate her charges, and eliminate the requirement to serve in the labor assistance program.

At Golding's initial trial, Cryan denied that a sexual relationship existed between the two, which negatively impacted Golding's appearance. The presiding judge relied heavily on Cryan's false testimony, Golding's criminal attorney said, and the lie "had the effect of having [his client] falsely portrayed publicly as a delusional stalker." This image has spilled over into Golding's personal and professional life since the trial.

The new evidence in question is a series of e-mails that were leaked to the New York Post earlier this year. New Jersey criminal attorneys say that the e-mails detail a sexual relationship between the Assemblyman and Golding. The correspondence—more than 150 explicit exchanges from January to August 2004—was kept under seal during Golding's original trial, and was not a factor in her sentencing. Although she consistently claimed that she and Cryan had been involved, the judge and jury had no tangible proof. These e-mails indicate a definite, personal relationship between the two.

Sussex County First Assistant Prosecutor Gregory Mueller, who led the prosecution for Golding, has said that he will help the woman in her application to open the e-mails to the courts, mostly so that he can determine how the sealed documents were leaked. The New York Post has claimed that the e-mails were found on a reporter's driveway.

While the new evidence will certainly have an impact on Golding's public persona, it may not have the effect she desires on her stalking sentence. New Jersey criminal lawyers say that the e-mails were written more than ten years ago, and that Golding's own testimony at trial may not help her case. She admitted under oath to "relentlessly stalking [Kathleen Conway] and making her fear for her safety," and the judge used this testimony in making his decision. The new evidence may not be enough to prove that Golding was out of her mind, or had reasonable cause to react to the ending of her relationship with Cryan.

The leading criminal attorneys at New Jersey law firm Helmer, Conley, and Kasselman, PA, represent anyone whose life has been negatively impacted by false testimony, and is seeking to reduce a criminal sentence.

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