Chicago Sun-Times
Inside the Rod Blagojevich investigation and related cases

Blagojevich trial: Monk mentions "occasional drug use," while roommates with Blagojevich


Reporting with Chris Fusco and Sarah Ostman

Sam Adam Jr. livens up the room as his animated cross examination of Lon Monk begins.
Adam's questions cut deep, to Lon Monk and Rod Blagojevich's friendship beginning back at Pepperdine Law School in Malibu, Calif.

Adam says Monk and Blagojevich lived together in law school, they shared secrets, talked about girls. Monk agrees.

Adam says the two of them never committed any crimes together back then, right?

Monk: "Other than some occasional drug use," Monk says to some laughter by spectators. "Yes."
Adam: "I'm not here to ask you about that."

"Rod trusted you," Adam said, then dramatically: "Is there anything from your relationship in Pepperdine that would cause you to believe you'd be here," he says, pointing to the witness chair. Then, pointing to the defense table: "And he'd be there?"

Adam then discusses campaign law, attempting to show that Rod Blagojevich didn't meet the legal requirement of a quid pro quo, arguing he had to expressly ask for money from a donor for it to be illegal.

Monk said he asked horse racing executives for campaign contributions at the same time they awaited Blagojevich's signing of legislation but Monk said he made the request in two conversations.

"I was trying to somehow justify in my mind and make myself feel better," Monk said. "I'm going to keep it to two separate conversations ... I wanted to go there and not cross the line."
Monk said he didn't want to the two to be linked.
"When you say link, that's not exchange one for the other?" Adam said.
"Well it kind of is," Monk said.
"Did you ever hear, ever...did Rod ever tell you one time he wasn't signing the racetrack bill?" Adam asked.
"No," said Monk.
"You're his best friend, aren't you?" Adam said.
Pausing: "Yeah, good friend."

Across the room, Rod Blagojevich is watching. Pen down, he appears calm.

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Natasha Korecki published on June 14, 2010 4:13 PM.

Attorney for Robert Blagojevich starts cross-examination was the previous entry in this blog.

Blagojevich trial: A full day of cross-examination ahead is the next entry in this blog.

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