Bridgegate’s Bridget Kelly Gets Prison Term Cut to 13 Months

(Bloomberg) -- Bridget Anne Kelly, once a top aide to former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, was sentenced Wednesday to 13 months in prison for her role in the George Washington Bridge lane-closing scandal, a reduction of five months from her original term.

Kelly, 46, was convicted at a 2016 trial for her role in a politically motivated scheme to use crippling traffic jams to punish the mayor of Fort Lee, New Jersey, for failing to endorse Christie’s 2013 re-election. Another Christie ally, Bill Baroni, was also found guilty in the case known as Bridgegate. Christie, a Republican, was never charged in the plot to close access lanes to the bridge, though it helped end his presidential ambitions.

Bridgegate’s Bridget Kelly Gets Prison Term Cut to 13 Months

Kelly came to fame after the disclosure of an email she sent on Aug. 13, 2013, less than a month before the closing of the access lanes. “Time for some traffic problems in Fort Lee,” Kelly wrote. At the trial in federal court in Newark, New Jersey, she testified that she was tarred by Christie’s administration and that she told the governor a month before the lane closings about a planned traffic study.

An appeals court later threw out the civil rights charges against Baroni and Kelly while upholding their convictions for crimes including wire fraud and conspiracy. The panel also ordered their resentencing. In February, U.S. District Judge Susan Wigenton reduced the prison term of Baroni, the former deputy executive director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which operates the bridge. He received 18 months instead of two years.

In a statement, Kelly called her case a “miscarriage of justice” and said that her fight will continue.

“The truth will be heard -- and for the former governor, that truth will be unescapable, regardless of lucrative television deals or even future campaigns,” she said. “I plan to make sure of that.”

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