Sandi Jackson has requested the names, phone numbers and addresses of any sexual partners Jesse Jackson Jr. may have had during their 26-year marriage.
As one chapter in the contentious divorce case ends, another begins.
That request was made on March 31, according to a filing in Washington, D.C. — which is where the former political power couple’s divorce case will be settled.
Jesse Jackson Jr. on Wednesday filed court papers saying he’s choosing to dismiss divorce proceedings in Chicago — allowing the case to continue solely in the nation’s capital.
Documents filed last month in Washington, D.C., show Sandi Jackson’s attorneys requested that the former congressman “state the name, telephone number, and address of each and every person other than the Plaintiff with whom you had sexual relations since the date of your marriage to the Plaintiff and the date and location of each and every such incidence of sexual relations.”
The requests made March 31 had to pertain to the question of jurisdiction in Washington and temporary alimony — not the entire divorce case.
Jesse Jackson Jr.’s Washington attorney objected to Sandi Jackson’s request last week, saying it is “entirely irrelevant to the pending issues.” They are seeking a protective order limiting the former congressman’s obligation to respond to that question.
The document also asked Jesse Jackson Jr. explain why Sandi Jackson may be “totally or partially responsible for the estrangement of the marriage” — asking for names, addresses and telephone numbers of anyone with knowledge of those facts.
Again, Jesse Jackson Jr.’s attorney called that request “irrelevant” to the case.
Anne Marie Jackson, the former congressman’s attorney, writes that Sandi Jackson “has made it clear that she intends to publicize and use information from her marriage for her financial benefit,” citing a Chicago Sun-Times story in which columnist Michael Sneed reported that the former alderman wants to write a book about her 23-month stint in federal prison and how it impacted her life.
The filing also seeks information about any payments Jesse Jackson Jr. received during their marriage, as well as retirement, pension, profit sharing and all other financial planning information.
Jesse Jackson Jr.’s attorney called those requests “unduly burdensome and irrelevant.”
Other requests included copies of “any and all written communications or electronic mail messages” between the two.
Jesse Jackson Jr. and Sandi Jackson were married on June 1, 1991.
Before his indictment, Jesse Jackson Jr. made headlines for his role in the criminal case against former Gov. Rod Blagojevich, who eventually was convicted for crimes including trying to sell the U.S. Senate seat vacated by President Barack Obama.
Jesse Jackson Jr., who’d lobbied Blagojevich to appoint him to the seat, denied any wrongdoing and was never charged in that case. But the FBI did interview a Washington, D.C., restaurant hostess and model named Giovana Huidobro — whom Jesse Jackson Jr. acknowledged was a “social acquaintance” — as part of its probe.
Huidobro told authorities she knew nothing of Jackson’s political dealings regarding the Senate seat, the Chicago Sun-Times reported in 2010. She also said she flew to Chicago on several occasions at Jackson’s request and that Jackson sometimes reimbursed her for her travels.
After the Sun-Times story, Sandi Jackson released a statement saying her family had been “privately addressing” the matter “for two years” and asking the public to “respect our family’s right to continue to handle this matter privately.”
The former congressman on Wednesday filed papers to dismiss divorce proceedings in Chicago — allowing the contentious case to continue solely in Washington, D.C.
Both Jesse Jackson Jr. and Sandi Jackson are scheduled to appear for a hearing in a courtroom in the nation’s capital on Friday.
In a statement, Jesse Jackson Jr. said the case “is and always has been about the protection of my children from damaging information and material not in my possession.”
“It remains the desire of the entire Jackson Family that none of its members, particularly the young children, be subjected to the very damaging emotional and psychological harm that could flow from the introduction of these materials into the public sphere by third parties,” he said. “While I am dismissing my formal legal action in Chicago and choosing to pursue my case in Washington, my family’s resolve in this regard is not diminished.”
According to Jesse Jackson Jr.’s Chicago attorney Brendan Hammer, the motion to voluntarily dismiss his Illinois case was made “in the interest of his family’s finances, to swiftly move to the substance of this case and to conduct depositions and obtain the full disclosure of relevant information and materials without any further delay.”
Jesse Jackson Jr. is also withdrawing any objections he’s made about where the case should be heard, in the Washington, D.C. case.
“Mrs. Jackson has always maintained that the District of Columbia is the proper forum for the dissolution of her marriage to Mr. Jackson,” said her lawyer, Chandra Walker Holloway. “She is pleased the parties now agree. Mrs. Jackson’s only concern has been the welfare of her children and looks forward to the resolution of all remaining issues.“
In January, Jesse Jackson Jr.’s Chicago attorney vowed to fight to keep the case in Illinois, arguing Sandi Jackson committed “acts” in the state that gave rise to their divorce action.
Soon after, former Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy, Rick Simon, a former Chicago police sergeant who now runs a cleaning company with city contracts, and former Chicago Police Officer James Love were issued subpoenas in the divorce case. Those subpoenas sought information about gifts given to Sandi Jackson.
Jackson Jr. has said he and his estranged wife are $1.8 million in debt thanks to legal bills from their federal criminal prosecution and mounting fees from an acrimonious divorce playing out in courtrooms in two cities.
The former couple has already sparred over child support payments in the D.C. case.
A judge on April 13 increased Jackson Jr.’s child support payments — resolving a dispute that had Sandi Jackson’s attorney accusing the former congressman of not prioritizing his children and his side staunchly denying that claim.
Both Jacksons pleaded guilty in August 2013 to various schemes relating to the looting of his congressional campaign fund. The former South Side 7th Ward alderman and the former 2nd Congressional District lawmaker each went to prison for diverting $750,000 from campaign funds for their personal use between 2005 and 2012.