Natalie Peroutka, the wife of controversial County Council Chair Michael Peroutka, was hired as an intern for Judge Paul F. Harris, Jr. in July of this year. Harris is the judge who will decide the case of The State of Maryland vs. John Adam Havermann. Havermann, 19, stands accused of a hate crime for hanging a noose at Crofton Middle School. Havermann waived his right to a jury trial on Thursday and will hear judge Harris’ decision on Tuesday.
Natalie Peroutka, 52, graduated from University of Baltimore Law School, recently passed the bar in Maryland and will be sworn into the Maryland Bar on December 14. Mrs. Peroutka lists the white supremacist and hate group League of the South, of which her husband was a long-time member, on her Pinterest account under the title, “Things that make me unpopular with some.” She also lists a handgun and the Institution of the Constitution, an extremist group started by Mr. Peroutka, that holds classes and seminars to train children and adults that biblical law should supersede federal and state law. Mrs. Peroutka was also shown at the 2015 League of the South conference on the groups’ website. The photo has since been removed but can be seen here as well as a screenshot on her Pinterest page:
Judge Harris was in private practice in Pasadena, Maryland for about 30 years before being appointed to the bench on Dec. 17, 2004. He has had a controversial tenure, most notably when letting a defendant off who was witnessed by police punching his girlfriend. “You have very rare cases; sadomasochists sometimes like to get beat up,” Harris said in his decision. Harris will retire at 70, next year.
Natalie Peroutka, along with Mr. Peroutka, were both reported today by the Arundel Patriot as having attended a fundraiser for Roy Moore in Severna Park in September. Both Peroutkas gave money to Moore’s campaign. Although the two are referred to as a couple and have the same last name, it has not been confirmed whether they are legally married.
Anne Arundel County State’s Attorney Wes Adams is prosecuting the crime and said he could not comment on this story because the trial is ongoing. John Havermann’s defense attorney is David Putzi, who is referred to on his firm’s website as a “Sex Offense Attorney.”
Anne Arundel Civil Rights leader Carl Snowden who is closely watching the trial said that the judge should have disclosed the fact that Mrs. Peroutka was working for him, at the very least.
On Tuesday, December 12, 2017, in Courtroom 3A at 1:30 p.m., Harris will decide the case of John Havermann.
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