Leftist St. Louis prosecutor Kim Gardner announces plan to resign at end of month

May 5, 2023
Ben Marquis

St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner, a far-left progressive prosecutor who has been sharply criticized for years over her policies and reforms, has abruptly announced her resignation at the end of the month, Fox News reported.

Gardner, who was first elected in 2016 with substantial financial backing from progressive leftist billionaire and Democratic megadonor George Soros, and was re-elected in 2020 again with the help of his funding, had actually just recently stated her intention to run for a third term in the next election cycle.

However, she was facing mounting and bipartisan demands for her demands from across the city and state, as well as legal and legislative efforts to remove her from office if she declined to leave of her own accord.

Planned resignation announced

Gardner posted a copy of her resignation letter on Twitter and clearly implied therein that racism and sexism from people from "outside of the city" who had targeted her were to blame for her decision to step down from office.

She more specifically cited as a factor a bill under consideration by the Missouri state legislature that would end the practice of local elections for circuit attorneys and instead allow the state's governor to appoint those chief prosecutors, which she likened to voter suppression and removal of rights, and vowed to fight back against.

Gardner also staunchly defended the policies and reforms she had implemented over the years as just and necessary and rejected the many criticisms those same policies and reforms had received.

State attorney general was seeking her removal from office

Republican Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey had been behind a legal effort to force Circuit Attorney Gardner out of office via a lawsuit and issued a statement in response to the news that she had announced her resignation effective June 1.

"There is absolutely no reason for the Circuit Attorney to remain in office until June 1," Bailey said. "We remain undeterred with our legal quest to forcibly remove her from office. Every day she remains puts the city of St. Louis in more danger. How many victims will there be between now and June 1? How many defendants will have their constitutional rights violated? How many cases will continue to go unprosecuted?"

The "legal quest" referenced by the attorney general was a "petition in quo warranto," or challenge against her right to hold public office, that he had filed in March that accused Gardner of having "knowingly and willfully failed to do her duties as a prosecutor" in a variety of ways.

Among the many examples cited were issues like her failures to review warrant applications, pursue prosecutions, or even actually appear in courtrooms for trials, as well as engaging in "costly and wasteful litigation" against her own city and state and requesting low or no bonds for violent repeat offenders.

The state AG also cited the "toxic and dysfunctional culture" in Gardner's office that has resulted in a high turnover of staff and overworked and burnt-out prosecutors who are often ill-prepared for trial or commit abuses and errors that lead to cases being dismissed.

Facing contempt of court charges and possible sanctions

Separately, Fox News noted that Gardner is facing at least two different proceedings that seek to hold her in contempt of court with regard to the failure of some of her prosecutors to show up in court for trial, as well as accusations of prosecutorial misconduct and the mishandling of cases, for which she has already been sanctioned in the past.

It remains to be seen if the state courts will continue to proceed with AG Bailey's petition or the contempt charges once Gardner has finally left office in June.

Latest News

© 2023 - Patriot News Alerts