Police report: Senate election plot was hatched on Facebook

Posted on May 24, 2014 

A police report obtained by a Jackson website said the plot to photograph Sen. Thad Cochran's wife in her nursing home bed began on Facebook.

Four men, Clayton Kelly of Pearl, John Mary  of Hattiesburg, Mark Mayfield of Madison and Richard Sager of Ellisville have been charged with felony conspiracy in the case. Kelly also is charged with one count of abuse, neglect and exploitation and one count of photo/filming without permission. Sager also is charged with obstruction of justice.

Kelly and Sager remain jailed; the others are free on bond.

According to the report obtained by the Jackson Jambalaya site, Kelly communicated with a person known as John Bert on Facebook. Bert used a photograph of "Star Wars" character Obi-Wan Kenobi as his profile photo.

Bert is also the name used by John Mary on "The Right Side" radio show he took over from Sen. Chris McDaniel when McDaniel joined the state Senate. McDaniel and his campaign have denied any inolvement in photographing Rose Cochran in St. Catherine's Village in Madison.

Kelly, according to the report posted by Jackson Jambalaya on its website, told police he took the photograph at the direction of Mary. Mary's identity was confirmed through the phone number he gave Kelly, according to the report. Kelly also told police someone named Mark was involved in the caper but there is no mention of anyone named Richard Sager.

The photograph was eventually used in an attack ad against Cochran that was briefly posted on YouTube on April 26.

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