Roy Moore’s campaign to discredit the five women who have accused him of pursuing them as teenagers when he was well into his 30s reached a new height of absurdity on Wednesday. During a thoroughly hyped but ultimately uneventful press conference, Phillip Jauegui, one of the Alabama Senate candidate’s lawyers, suggested that his client’s signature in Beverly Nelson’s yearbook was falsified.
On Monday, Nelson accused Moore of sexual assault during in press conference with her lawyer, Gloria Allred. At the time of the attack, Nelson was 16 and Moore was 30-something deputy district attorney in Gadsden, AL. As evidence of Moore’s predatory behavior, Nelson provided a copy of her yearbook, which Moore (allegedly) signed. “To a sweeter more beautiful girl I could not say Merry Christmas. Christmas 1977. Love, Roy Moore, D.A.,” the message read.
Jauegui implied someone forged Moore’s handwriting in the note — a fraud he would like to prove by allowing a “neutral custodian” to assess whether the message’s handwriting is, indeed, Moore’s. He didn’t go as far as to accuse Nelson or Allred of forging the note, but he did attempt to cast doubt on its veracity by requesting a handwriting expert’s analysis on the original yearbook, and not a picture of it. (The testimony of handwriting experts, by the way, has limited standing in U.S. courts since the science is subjective.)
“Was it written by Judge Moore? Or was it written by somebody else,” Jauegui asked. “Judge Moore says there’s no way in the world that’s his handwriting. I want you to look at it. Look some of other writing of his and make your own determination.”
On Twitter, Moore reiterated Jauegui’s claims in an open letter to Sean Hannity, who has remained one of his defenders — despite, you know, Moore’s alleged child predation.
“Those initials as well as the date under the signature block and the printed name of the restaurant are written in a style inconsistent with the rest of the yearbook inscription,” Moore wrote. “The ‘7's’ in ‘Christmas 1977' are noticeably different script than the ‘7's’ in the date ‘12-22-77.’ I believe tampering has occurred.”
If you would like to waste 14 minutes of your life, as I have, watching an alleged sexual predator’s lawyer dissect the intricacies of a yearbook signature, see below: