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Attorney Sarah Peterson Herr Fired Over Tweet Attacking Former Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline

By Staff Reporter on November 20, 2012 9:54 AM EST 0

Sarah Peterson Herr / Phill Kline (Photo: IBTG)
Sarah Peterson Herr / Phill Kline (Photo: IBTG)

Kansas appeals court attorney Sarah Peterson Herr was fired on Monday after she inappropriately posted a scathing tweet attacking former Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline, who is currently appearing before the Kansas Supreme Court for an ethics investigation.

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Former Attorney General Phill Kline currently faces trial on Kansas Supreme Court due to questions of conduct and controversy shrouding a past investigation on abortion providers. Kansas Supreme Court is deciding whether Kline's conduct should result in an indefinite suspension of his license to practice law.

Sarah Herr, research attorney for a Kansas Court of Appeals judge, tweeted this when Kline appeared before the court: "Why is Phil Klein (sic) smiling? There is nothing to smile about, douchebag." In another tweet, Herr stated that Kline should be disbarred for seven years for his conduct.

Reacting to the Twitter activity, Kansas Supreme Court Chief Justic Lawton Nuss announced on Monday that Sarah Herr had been fired for misconduct and the Phill Kline case has been referred to other law offices.

Following her termination, Sarah Peterson Herr said she was not aware that here Twitter posts were accessible to all Twitter readers and understood her tweets undermined the integrity of the Kansas state court system.

An unexpected turn of events, Phill Kline's representing attorney Tom Condit called for an independent investigation of the judicial branch, suspecting that the attitude in Herr's Twitter posts against Kline is likely shared across the entire court system. Condit believes Herr's termination was fair but a more extensive review is necessary.

Condit said, "I have no interest in insulting any judge or justice in that courthouse who is prepared to be fair and objective as it relates to Phill Kline. But the bigger question has always been what kind of atmosphere prevails in the back rooms of the high courts of Kansas that would make a young lady like that so comfortable to tweet those kinds of comments in those circumstances."

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