In Petraeus Scandal, Jill Kelley Decides Now is Time to Defend Her Name

Wednesday, 28 Nov 2012 08:51 AM

By Dale Eisinger

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After weeks of silence following the extramarital scandal that unseated former CIA director Gen. David Petraeus, Jill Kelley, a peripheral character to the saga, is trying to defend her name, according to the Associated Press.

Kelley, a Tampa socialite, has hired a top Washington attorney to recast her relationships with Petraeus and Gen. John Allen, after being dragged into the media firestorm surrounding the Petraeus affair.

On Tuesday, Kelley and her attorney Abbe Lowell released emails, telephone conversations and other files they say prove Kelley never tried to exploit her friendship with the generals for personal gain.

"You no doubt have seen the tremendous attention that the Kelleys have received in the media," Lowell wrote to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Tampa, demanding to know why the Kelley family had been publicly implicated the matter.

"All they did to receive this attention was to let law enforcement know that they had been the subjects of inappropriate and potentially threatening behavior by someone else," said Lowell, referring to emails Pamela Broadwell, the mistress of Petraeus, sent to Kelley that warned her to back off from the general.

Kelley was an active member of military social circles around Tampa’s MacDill Air Force Base, often hosting parties at her waterfront mansion and becoming close to Petraeus, Allen and others during their time stationed there.

Lowell added that the unauthorized public leak of Kelley’s name could be subject to federal privacy laws.

"These leaks most certainly had to come, at least in part, from government sources," he wrote. "The earliest and best example of the leaks would be the release to the media of the names of my clients. As you know, there are several rules and laws that seek to protect United States citizens against such leaks."

Kelley, a 37-year-old mother of three, was set to be the honorary consul to South Korea, a result of her friendship with Petraeus. Becoming embroiled in the scandal cost her that post.

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