Judge grants acquittal motion on 15 of 20 charges against state Sen. Katrina Robinson

Katrina Robinson (Image credit: Tennessee General Assemlby)

A federal judge has granted a motion for acquittal on 15 of 20 charges in the fraud trial of state Sen. Katrina Robinson (D-Memphis).

U.S. District Judge Sheryl Lipman said she would make an an oral ruling in court on Monday morning, with the jury set to return later in the day to hear the defense’s case. Robinson’s attorneys had made the motion to dismiss the entire case after the prosecution had rested last week, arguing the government had failed to prove she had misspent federal grant money meant for her nursing school on personal expenses.

The dismissed counts include allegations Robinson had illegally spent grant money on her 2018 Senate campaign, legal fees for her divorce, and contributions to her retirement account.

What remains of the more than $600,000 prosecutors had alleged Robinson misspent are two counts of wire fraud related to $2,326 she paid an artist through a booking agent and $1,158 that went to a wedding makeup artist. Also surviving the judge’s ruling are three counts of wire fraud alleging Robinson made fraudulent representations in annual performance reports from 2017 through 2019.