Clinton Probe Mistreated 'Hysterical' Lewinsky

Prosecutors tried to discourage her from calling lawyer
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 24, 2014 5:05 AM CDT
Updated Oct 24, 2014 7:40 AM CDT
Clinton Probe Mistreated 'Hysterical' Lewinsky
Monica Lewinsky pauses during her speech at the Forbes Under 30 Summit at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia on Oct. 20, 2014.   (AP Photo/Philadelphia Daily News, David Maialetti)

FBI agents and government lawyers treated Monica Lewinsky so disgracefully that even a prosecutor said it had an "unsettling effect on his own state of mind," according to a government report obtained by the Washington Post. The review conducted by government lawyers in 2000 describes how Lewinsky repeatedly asked to see a lawyer or parent after she was first confronted by authorities and was "crying, sobbing, regaining her composure, screaming" during the 12 hours in a hotel room that prosecutors spent trying to persuade her to wear a wire against Bill Clinton. They tried various strategies to discourage the "hysterical but very focused" 24-year-old from contacting her lawyer.

Earlier this week, Lewinsky gave her own account of the 1998 encounter, describing how she was "ambushed" in a food court at a DC mall, how she was threatened with up to 27 years in prison if she didn't cooperate, and how authorities threatened to prosecute her mother as well. The report—which can be seen in full here—concludes that the actions of lawyers from Kenneth Starr's office fell short of professional misconduct, but the encounter "could have been handled better." It's not clear why it has been out of sight for 14 years, though most key players in the case, including Lewinsky, believed it had been sealed by the courts, the Post notes. On Monday, Lewinsky told a forum in Philadelphia that her new mission is to end cyberbullying, describing herself as "patient zero," reports CNN (Read more Monica Lewinsky stories.)

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