Kent faces new charges as sexual assault trial date nears

Marilyn Tennissen Jan. 7, 2009, 4:00pm

Samuel Kent

Only weeks away from a trial stemming from sexual abuse of an employee, a federal judge in Houston has now been indicted for attacking another female court employee.

U.S. District Judge Samuel Kent of the Texas Southern District was indicted by a federal grand jury on Jan. 6 on charges he sexually assaulted another woman and lied about it to a judicial disciplinary panel.

According to the Houston Chronicle, the same grand jury that indicted Kent in August has added additional charges of aggravated sexual abuse, abusive sexual contact and obstruction of justice.

A trial for the first sexual charges is scheduled for Jan. 26 before U.S. Senior Judge Roger Vinson, a Florida judge assigned to the proceedings.

The first indictment stemmed from a complaint by his former case manager Cathy McBroom, who said the judge physically touched her under her clothing twice and often made obscene suggestions.

Kent, the first federal judge to be charged with federal sex crimes, could face life in prison and a fine of $250,000 for the first charges.

It is unclear if the new indictment will postpone the Jan. 26 trial.

Kent has repeatedly denied the charges.

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