Reporter

Nancy Amons is an award-winning member of the News4 Investigates team. She has been breaking stories in Middle Tennessee for more than 20 years.

A disgraced judge will be sentenced Friday.

Casey Moreland served as a Davidson County General Sessions judge for more than 20 years.

Natalie Amos

Natalie Amos

A News 4 I-Team investigation lead to the arrest and downfall of the judge, who plead guilty to abusing his power to steal from court clients and give special judicial favors to women he had sex with.

Newly-filed sentencing documents reveal that federal investigators interviewed one of Moreland’s own assistants, who verified that Moreland met one female defendant behind closed doors after court hours ended.   

Leigh Terry was a beautiful woman in big trouble.

She was arrested for her third DUI in June 2013.

Her friend, Natalie Amos, told News 4’s Nancy Amons that Terry contacted her to relay a conversation Terry had with her lawyer, Bryan Lewis.

"She had had several DUI's," Amos told the I-Team, "and she was going to jail for quite a while."

Leigh Terry

Leigh Terry

Under the law, Terry should have spent 45 days in jail, but Amos said when Terry called Lewis, Lewis gave her a choice.

Lewis was on vacation with Moreland at a beach house in Dauphin Island, Alabama.

"He said your options are, you either come down here with us, or, you're in jail," Amos said Terry told her.

Terry flew to Alabama, where prosecutors said she shared a bedroom with the judge. 

"She said it was a miserable weekend, because she felt obligated to keep Casey happy to get out of whatever trouble she was in, and she did have sex with him," Amos said.

Federal investigators said in the sentencing memorandum that around the same time, the summer of 2013, Terry came to the courthouse after-hours. 

Moreland told his judicial assistant "she should go home early," leaving Moreland and Terry alone in his office.

The judicial assistant later saw Moreland looking at a nude photo of Terry on a friend’s phone.   

"And you know it was like, blow a judge, or go to jail," Amos said Terry told her.

Terry didn’t spent any time in jail on that DUI charge. She made a plea deal, according to federal investigators, "with Moreland's approval,” to spend five days in jail, but didn’t serve the sentence. Later, Moreland ended her probation early.

Federal investigators never got to interview Terry. She committed suicide in May 2016 after returning from an out of town trip with Bryan Lewis, Casey Moreland, Natalie Amos and others. Terry died in an apartment in the Stahlman Building that Lewis had rented for her.

Copyright 2018 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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