ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren, a onetime rising star in the Democratic Party who faces corruption charges that could end her career — and land her behind bars — appeared in a Monroe County courtroom Monday to plead not guilty to all charges.

Warren, 43, is accused of bypassing campaign contribution limits when she successfully ran for reelection as mayor in 2017.

Cayuga County Judge Thomas Leone will preside over her case in Monroe County to possibly avoid any judicial ties to the mayor.

“In my 14 years on the bench, I’ve never told my administrative judge ‘no,’ so here I am in Rochester today,” he said.

Appearing via a live stream at Monroe County Supreme Court, Warren sat cross-legged in the courtroom’s first row wearing a lilac face mask and a white coat.

Leone didn’t mince words in releasing the embattled mayor from custody as her court case plays out.

“Ms. Warren, I am going to release you on your own recognizance,” the judge said, further warning her not to get into “any trouble.”

“If you are convicted of the most serious charges here — well, they’re all Class E felonies — I’ll show you absolutely no consideration whatsoever, and I will sentence you to prison, do you understand that?” he added.

“Yes,” Warren solemnly responded.

Warren was indicted on first-degree scheme to defraud and election law violation by a Rochester grand jury on Friday. The charges came after a years-long investigation into her 2017 reelection campaign, prosecutors said.

Warren’s campaign treasurer, Albert Jones Jr., and treasurer Rosalind Brooks-Harris of the political action committee “Warren for a Strong Rochester” also face charges in the case. Brooks-Harris is also Rochester City’s finance director.

The mayor could serve up to four years in prison if convicted; she also faces

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee man will likely spend the rest of his life in prison after being convicted of killing his parents over Thanksgiving weekend in 2016 and disposing of their bodies.

Joel Guy Jr., 32, was found guilty Friday in Knox County of two counts of premeditated first-degree murder, three counts of felony murder and two counts of abuse of a corpse, news outlets reported.

Prosecutors alleged he fatally stabbed his parents, Joel Guy Sr., 61, and Lisa Guy, 55, and dismembered their bodies in a plot to cash in on $500,000 in life insurance benefits after learning they were planning to retire and no longer pay his bills.

Joel Guy Jr. had never held a job and had been taking college courses for a decade at Louisiana State University, The Knoxville News Sentinel said.

He was found to have taken money from his parents’ bank accounts for his rent and tuition after stabbing them dozens of times in their Hardin Valley home, according to authorities. He then attempted to dissolve their remains in chemicals.

A judge was set to decide next month whether Joel Guy Jr. would serve two life terms consecutively.

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SAN FRANCISCO — Federal prosecutors have asked for a “year of imprisonment” for a 78-year-old attorney and former California legislator convicted of laundering $685,000 meant for the construction of coffee shops at BART stations, court records show.

Terry Goggin, a San Bernardino-based legislator during the 1970s and 80s, is awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty to money laundering in a deal with federal prosecutors. His attorneys, citing Goggin’s age, heart problems, and the COVID-19 pandemic, have asked for a federal judge to sentence Goggin to home confinement and probation in lieu of jail.

But, citing the need to deter other white-collar criminals, prosecutors are holding the line on a jail or prison sentence for the former politician. The U.S. Attorney’s recommendation, 12 months and one day, is three months less than the term of incarceration recommended by U.S. Probation.

“While this risk is real, the government believes that it can be mitigated by a shorter custodial term, particularly because the Bureau of Prisons has greatly increased its knowledge and experience regarding how to prevent the transmission of COVID-19 since the pandemic began in the United States six months ago,” assistant U.S. Attorney Katherine Lloyd-Lovett wrote in a sentencing memo.

There have been nearly 127,000 documented COVID-19 cases in the federal prison system, and 124 people have died in federal custody. Of those, 24 have occurred since late July when the Bureau of Prisons experienced its 100th virus-related fatality.

In a sentencing memo, Goggin’s attorney wrote that being a convicted felon and other consequences, like “loss of his law license, and public shame and embarrassment,” were deterrent enough.

“All of the privileges Mr. Goggin enjoyed in his life as an educated urban white man have vanished by his own hands. He had hoped his legacy would be that of a successful politician,


Convicted billionaire campaign donor Greg Lindberg’s name is coming up a lot in the race for insurance commissioner. This year’s contest for the regulatory office is a rematch from 2016, with Republican incumbent Mike Causey facing the two-term Democrat he defeated four years ago: Wayne Goodwin, who’s now chairman of the N.C. Democratic Party.

Causey played an instrumental role in the bribery case, wearing a wire for federal investigators and recording conversations in which Lindberg, his associates and then-N.C. Republican Party Chairman Robin Hayes offered to bribe Causey with big campaign contributions in exchange for taking action that Lindberg sought for his insurance companies, according to court documents. Lindberg was recently sentenced to seven years in prison.

Goodwin was never accused of any criminal acts in the investigation. But he benefited from campaign contributions from Lindberg in 2016 — including a $500,000 donation to a PAC supporting Goodwin’s re-election — and he went to work for Lindberg’s company as a consultant for several months in 2017.

Goodwin said in a recent interview that Lindberg got “no special favors” from his office, and on insurance regulatory issues related to Lindberg’s companies, “I relied on the input from subject matter experts.”

Causey’s campaign is emphasizing Goodwin’s ties to Lindberg. A video ad posted on YouTube calls Goodwin “a fancy dancy politician who has made a living off politics … Wayne Goodwin is bought and paid for by Greg Lindberg.”

In an interview, Causey said voters should be concerned by Goodwin’s decision to accept Lindberg’s support in 2016. “If you have one entity that’s saying ‘we want to bankroll you,’ it raises a lot of red flags,” Causey said.

He said that when he took office, Department of Insurance employees told him they had concerns about how regulatory matters were handled