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No Ruling on Lawyer in Jones Case

November 20, 1997

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ A judge ended a hearing Wednesday without issuing a ruling on whether to compel a former White House aide to testify in Paula Jones’ sexual harassment lawsuit against President Clinton.

Mrs. Jones’ lawyers have subpoenaed Kathleen E. Willey, hoping to use her statements to establish a pattern of improper sexual overtures by the president. Ms. Willey’s lawyers asked U.S. District Judge Robert R. Merhige Jr. to toss out the subpoena.

The hearing was closed to the public over the objections of the media.

In September, Merhige sealed documents containing explanations by Ms. Jones’ attorneys on why Ms. Willey should be questioned. He said then that the explanations were ``at the very best the worst of hearsay.″

Both sides in the case expected the explanations to include detailed allegations of a romantic encounter between Clinton and Ms. Willey in the Oval Office. Ms. Willey worked in the White House social secretary’s office and the White House counsel’s office.

Ms. Jones is alleging that in May 1991, when Clinton was governor of Arkansas and she was a state employee, he solicited her for oral sex in a room at the Excelsior Hotel in Little Rock. Clinton denies her allegations and said he doesn’t remember meeting Ms. Jones.

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