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Monday, November 19, 2007

Kimberly's hubby charged w/assault

Wednesday, June 6, 2007
Accuser: Wife tried to steal boyfriend'Real' Housewife also a 'desperate' one?
FRANK MICKADEIT


The mystery surrounding the Scott Bryant case has been this: What exactly caused the long-simmering rift between the Bryants and Jana Kindchadwick that culminated in Scott allegedly belting Jana one fine evening last June? Taking the stand yesterday in Judge Everett Dickey's courtroom, the accuser told us: Scott's wife, ex-Housewife Kimberly Bryant, had hit on Jana's boyfriend. Neither Bryant has taken the stand yet, so we don't know their side.

All we have so far is what Kindchadwick, a 43-year-old former fitness club manager, testified to. Jana and her boyfriend, Ron Baer, had been friends with the Bryants mainly because Baer had been Kimberly's fitness instructor at Coto's Golf & Racquet Club. (I'm not a member. They let anybody in.)

At some point, Baer dumped Kimberly as a client. Scott Bryant's attorney, Michael Molfetta, asked Jana whether this was because of a sexual harassment complaint the Bryants supposedly made against Baer. No, she replied, "because she (Kimberly) was the one who wanted to be more than just a client." Later, Molfetta asked Jana if she had sent Kimberly a message calling her "the c-word" and a "skank." Replied Jana: "I'm sure I sent a text to her when I found out she was trying to steal my boyfriend."So Molfetta established there was bad blood between the two couples well before the party last June 10 and that, possibly, Jana had cause to be aggressive toward Scott – providing his self-defense defense. Unfortunately, this had to be established at the expense of Kimberly being revealed as a possible, well, skank.


Pity.The jury is seven men and five women, all at least 35 and a couple probably double that. Three acknowledged they'd seen a little of the "Real Housewives" but said it hadn't made an impression. One man said he hates reality T.V. Molfetta himself called the show "a train wreck." Until opening statements the jurors had been given only the barest hint what this case was about. So when prosecutor Jason Ochs, during his brief opening, said he would prove Scott had hit a woman "with a closed-fist punch to the face" – twice – you should have seen the jurors' faces. One old boy in the back row – I have him pegged for about 75 – literally had his mouth hanging open. First into the witness box was a 13-year-old girl named Tiffany (what else?) testifying she saw Scott hit Jana. There's not much debate about that, so the main thing I took away from her was that this girl, then 12, had been summoned to the party at nearly midnight in the first place so she could bring over more vodka and ice from her nearby home. "We were all freaked out," she said of the fight. … What I did on my summer vacation, by Tiffany G.


Next up was the party hostess, Janine Sabella, who recounted the story she told me last year. The Bryants arrived uninvited, Kimberly insulted the hair extensions of a woman named Bridget and made some comment about Jana that got back to Jana. (I'll be candid. This has been a cultural awakening for me. Before last summer, I didn't even know there werehair extensions.) Anyway, Jana confronted Kimberly and tossed a Red Bull on her when Kimberly ignored her. About 45 minutes later, Scott got wind of it, doused Jana with champagne and hit her twice in the face with a closed fist. Jana's own version was similar, and I'm sure we're going to hear similar versions from other witnesses. Molfetta is picking away at the details on cross examination right now.


His witnesses will no doubt build a version that will differ on one critical point – who the aggressor was.Molfetta did score a pretty good hit on Jana, bringing out that a civil attorney wrote him a letter on her behalf offering to make the criminal case "go away" for $10,000. "I told him to buzz off," Molfetta said. Jana said the attorney was a friend of hers and not formally retained.


She also seemed to realize that neither she nor any attorney has the power to get the D.A. to drop charges. Nonetheless, Molfetta tripped her up when she at first said she did not authorize the $10,000 offer, but later conceded she was aware her attorney was going to ask for that amount.Molfetta's point: She has all the motive in the world to see Bryant convicted because she's already looking at cleaning up in some kind of civil action. She returns to the stand this morning.

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