Wayne County Judge Arnold O. Jones II is going to jail for trying to spy on his wife's text messages, the Raleigh News and Observer writes. When he suspected his wife was having an affair, instead of snooping through her phone himself, Jones thought it would be a good idea to ask a friend in the sheriff's office if copies of text messages between his wife and another man could be obtained through police channels—which is illegal without a warrant and suspicion of criminal activity. In exchange for the warrantless surveillance, Jones offered his "friend" two cases of Bud Light. Perhaps offended by the low-quality beer on offer, the deputy reported the judge for corruption.
The jury deliberated for only 33 minutes before finding Jones guilty, Fox News reports. Jones was convicted on three felony charges. He will face sentencing on Jan. 23. His defense plans to appeal the verdict. Jones' defense team argues that he was never informed his request was illegal, but his long career as a judge—including time as the chairman of the North Carolina Innocence Inquiry Commission—would seem to make it unlikely their appeal will be successful. Also working against Jones: He ended up paying $100 cash for the information instead of beer. (Read more crime stories.)