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Ex-Politico WH Correspondent Joe Williams Pleaded Guilty to Assaulting Ex-Wife

It turns out there’s another side to Joe Williams, the White House Correspondent and former college football player who recently parted ways with Politico. On May 24 of this year, he pled guilty to second degree assault against his ex-wife, paid a $200 fine and received six months of probation. His probation ends on November 24, 2012. Other charges he pleaded out include disorderly conduct and affray (i.e. a public order offense that consists of fighting in a public place). His ex-wife, author Amy Alexander, obtained a year long court order against him that began in February, 2012. The pair has two children whom he regularly sees. According to Silver Spring court documents obtained by FishbowlDC, Williams is to abide by the following:

On February 6, 2o12, there was a hearing at the District Court in Silver Spring, Md. Case type: Domestic Violence. Plaintiff: Amy Alexander. Defendant: Williams Joseph P Jr. The result was as follows:

COURT ORDERS:
SHALL NOT ABUSE
SHALL NOT CONTACT
SHALL NOT ENTER RESIDENCE
SHALL STAY AWAY FROM SCHOOL
SHALL STAY AWAY FROM CHILD CARE PROVIDERS
CUSTODY

On February 10, 2012 there was a second hearing. Same plaintiff and defendant. The result was as follows:

COURT ORDERS:
SHALL NOT ABUSE
SHALL NOT ENTER RESIDENCE
SURRENDER FIREARMS

We reached out to Williams today by phone to inquire about the court order and the reasons why it was issued. He called this a “ridiculous story” and said he has nothing to say until we speak with his Silver Spring attorney Shawn Bartley. We left a message for Bartley at his office. We requested comment from Alexander. We also sought comment from Politico Editor-in-Chief John Harris to inquire if he knew there was a current court order and assault charge against Williams. We also asked what Politico‘s policy is about conducting criminal background checks on potential employees. Most publications simply ask for references.

As has been widely reported, Politico suspended Williams after he told a national TV audience that Mitt Romney is more at ease around white people and called his own publication a “shitburger” when it comes to diversity and race. Williams lawyered up. He went on and off Twitter so much it gave us whiplash. Ultimately Politico‘s Editor, Harris, released a memo declaring that the publication and Williams came to a mutual agreement that Williams should move on.

Alexander filed a previous complaint against Williams in 2007. On August 2, 2007, Alexander filed what looks to be a restraining order against Williams. This appears to be temporary and lasted only from August 2, 2007 to August 9, 2007. On Aug. 9 the case was dismissed after the plaintiff withdrew the complaint. Alexander filed for divorce from Williams in July 9, 2007 after approximately 12 years of marriage. The court granted the divorce on April 7, 2008.

Noteworthy: In 2006, Alexander bylined a “Special to the Washington Post” story entitled “Mom vs. the Machine.” This had to be when the couple were in happier times, as she mentioned him in a piece concerning how to raise her children in the internet age.

An excerpt: “Like many parents, my relationship with technology is decidedly practical. My husband and I, friends our age, and co-workers are comfortable with e-mail and office programs such as Word and Excel. We’re e-mailing photos, downloading music and playing around with digital video projects.”

Williams’ Facebook page depicts him as a typical, loving father. He has many pictures of his children, one of him giving his son a piggyback ride. As noted above, the court order began in February.

UPDATE: Alexander returned our request for comment and replied by email, “I can’t comment on a legal case but will say that I sincerely hope that Joe Williams finds his professional footing and that he also begins to take seriously his responsibilities as the father of our two children.”

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