Gray cam­paign fig­ure’s sen­tenc­ing con­tin­ued to Feb.

The Washington Times Daily - - Metro - BY AN­DREA NO­BLE

A sen­tenc­ing sched­uled for Tues­day of a long­time cam­paign aide of D.C. Mayor Vin­cent C. Gray who pleaded guilty in con­nec­tion with a wide-rang­ing fed­eral cam­paign fi­nance probe has been con­tin­ued un­til Fe­bru­ary.

Ver­non E. Hawkins, a vol­un­teer ad­viser to Mr. Gray’s may­oral bid and a con­sul­tant and out­reach co­or­di­na­tor with some of the mayor’s past cam­paigns, will be sen­tenced on Feb. 14 and is said to be as­sist­ing fed­eral in­ves­ti­ga­tors with the probe.

“Mr. Hawkins has co­op­er­ated fully with the govern­ment and has abided by all the con­di­tions of his re­lease,” states the mo­tion for con­tin­u­ance filed by Hawkins’ lawyer, Wil­liam E. Lawler III.

U.S. Dis­trict Judge Colleen Kol­lar-Kotelly signed the or­der Thurs­day.

Hawkins has ad­mit­ted giv­ing an­other per­son money to leave the Dis­trict in or­der to evade ques­tions from law en­force­ment of­fi­cials and was charged with ly­ing to in­ves­ti­ga­tors about his role in the scheme.

Pros­e­cu­tors said Hawkins in De­cem­ber 2011 gave money to an un­named “Per­son One” to per­suade him/her “to leave town for an ex­tended pe­riod of time” so as to be un­avail­able to speak

with fed­eral agents. The pa­pers say Per­son One was the owner of a D.C. ca­ter­ing busi­ness who worked as trans­porta­tion co­or­di­na­tor with a get-out-the-vote ef­fort funded by a D.C. busi­ness­man.

A source with knowl­edge of the in­ves­ti­ga­tion, who asked not to be iden­ti­fied be­cause he was not au­tho­rized to speak pub­licly, iden­ti­fied Per­son One as La­mont Mitchell, owner of D.C.-based Imani Ca­ter­ing. The busi­ness­man was not named in the court doc­u­ments but is widely be­lieved to be Jef­frey E. Thomp­son.

The court doc­u­ments said Hawkins ob­tained the money from Thomp­son as­so­ciate Eu­ge­nia C. Har­ris, who pleaded guilty in July 2012 to charges re­lated to the cam­paign fi­nance in­ves­ti­ga­tion, ad­mit­ting that at least $650,000 in un­re­ported funds — also be­lieved to have come from Mr. Thomp­son — were used in Mr. Gray’s 2010 may­oral cam­paign. Two other Gray cam­paign oper­a­tives also pleaded guilty in con­nec­tion with the ef­fort.

Pros­e­cu­tors said Hawkins told FBI agents he was un­aware of any­one con­nected to the cam­paign be­ing asked to leave town to evade ques­tion­ing and that he had not re­quested any­one leave or as­sisted any­one in leav­ing.

The charge car­ries a max­i­mum fiveyear sen­tence.

Nei­ther Mr. Gray nor Mr. Thomp­son has been charged with any wrong­do­ing.

AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

Chris Cox picks up dried leaves he raked near the Lin­coln Memo­rial in Oc­to­ber dur­ing the par­tial fed­eral govern­ment shut­down. He took it upon him­self to spruce up the grounds that were be­ing ne­glected. He’ll re­turn Wed­nes­day to re­ceive a thank you.

Gray

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