Ex-wife catches Mark Sanford in her house

Wednesday, April 17, 2013 10:45 AM
Last updated 6:31 PM
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CHARLESTON, S.C. — Former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford’s ex-wife has accused him of trespassing at her home in violation of their divorce settlement, and a judge set a hearing two days after the Republican will stand for election in his effort to mount a political comeback by winning a vacant congressional seat.

Sanford  AP
AP
Sanford

Jenny Sanford confirmed Tuesday that court documents from family court acquired by The Associated Press outlining the complaint were authentic.

They show a judge has ordered Republican Mark Sanford to appear for a hearing next month, two days after he faces Democrat Elizabeth Colbert Busch in a special election for the state’s 1st District congressional seat.

The complaint says Jenny Sanford confronted the former governor leaving her Sullivans Island home on Feb. 3 by a rear door, using his cell phone for a flashlight. Her attorney filed the complaint the next day.

The couple’s 2010 divorce settlement says neither may enter the other’s home without permission. Mark Sanford lives about a 20-minute drive away from Sullivans Island in downtown Charleston.

Jenny Sanford said the complaint, and the timing of the hearing, has nothing to do with her husband’s attempt to rebuild his political career by winning the congressional seat he held for three terms in the 1990s.

The complaint was filed in February and a family court judge last month set the May 9 hearing date where Sanford will have to show cause why he should not be held in contempt for violating the couple’s divorce settlement.

“I am doing my best not to get in the way of his race,” Jenny Sanford, who for a time considered running herself, told the AP. “I want him to sink or swim on his own. For the sake of my children I’m trying my best not to get in the way, but he makes things difficult for me when he does things like trespassing.”

Neither Sanford’s campaign spokesman nor the Colbert Busch campaign would comment on the development.

The complaint filed by Jenny Sanford’s lawyer, Deena Smith McRackan, said Mark Sanford has “entered into a pattern of entering onto plaintiff’s property. Plaintiff has informed defendant on a number of occasions that this behavior is in violation of the court’s order and has demanded that it not occur again.”

In February of 2011, McRackan sent a letter to Mark Sanford telling him not to trespass on Jenny Sanford’s property. A copy of that letter was also sent to the local police, according to court filings.

Sanford, who has never lost an election, is trying to make a comeback after his political career was sidelined in 2009 after confessing an extramarital affair. As a sitting governor, he disappeared from the state for five days only to return and confess to an affair with an Argentine woman, Maria Chapur. He and Jenny Sanford soon divorced and he is now engaged to Chapur who lives in Argentina.

Jenny Sanford said Tuesday that she has custody of the couple’s four boys.

In December of 2011, she brought another complaint against her former husband saying Sanford not made the $5,000 yearly contribution for one of their sons’ college education. Jenny Sanford said that issue has now been resolved and declined to comment further.

Sanford, Colbert Busch and Green Party candidate Eugene Platt are seeking the congressional seat once held by Tim Scott who last year was appointed to the U.S. Senate.

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Jake
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Jake 04/17/13 - 09:57 am
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Does it really matter?

After all, he is a Republican and they always do the right thing.

InChristLove
22481
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InChristLove 04/17/13 - 09:58 am
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Can't imagine why need he

Can't imagine why need he would have to being in her residence but why hasn't she changed the locks on the door by now?

itsanotherday1
46695
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itsanotherday1 04/17/13 - 10:03 am
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Wow. SC conservatives are

Wow. SC conservatives are between a rock and a hard place. I foresee a lot of them just sitting on their hands, and just try to dump the Democrat in two years. (ala Barrow)

David Parker
7923
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David Parker 04/17/13 - 10:17 am
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I suppose it's hard to

I suppose it's hard to realize that after divorce, you never really owned the stuff you bought over the course of the marriage. Whoever gets the building it was housed in gets the sole-ownership unless itemized. Trying to itemize all the objects in my house would be a lesson in futility. Just too much to remember that is boxed and stored in attics and basements.

MarinerMan
2107
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MarinerMan 04/17/13 - 11:07 am
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Need a Word Here
Unpublished

I think the sentence should've read - "saying Sanford HAD not made the $5000"... I agree with the above, why did he think he needed to be there ?

happychimer
19347
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happychimer 04/17/13 - 11:52 am
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the latest is he was watching

the latest is he was watching the superbowl with his 14 yr old son while his ex was out of town.

KSL
139473
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KSL 04/17/13 - 12:10 pm
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2
Happy

Thanks for the update. Perhaps yet another error in judgment, but hardly nefarious intent.

Red Headed Step Child
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Red Headed Step Child 04/17/13 - 01:29 pm
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Watching the Superbowl?

Just like he was "hiking the Appalachian Trail" - uh, yeah. If that's the case, why didn't he have the kid brought to his place to watch it? Being a public figure, why jeopardize yourself by doing stupid stuff like this? I liked Sanford, but I gotta say, what was he thinking??

BamaMan
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BamaMan 04/17/13 - 01:16 pm
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2
He knew the rules

If he was watching a ballgame with his son, you would think he would get it cleared with the ex if for nothing else, but to show he didn't want to cause any trouble or question. From the sounds of the article, it's not the first time. Besides, if he had been there just watching a ballgame with his son, I doubt she would've done anything. He's an embarrassment to the gender if you ask me. He wouldn't want HER planting it down at HIS place without clearing it first, not that she would even entertain the thought of it.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 04/17/13 - 02:01 pm
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I believe BamaMan another

I believe BamaMan another article stated he tried to call his wife who was out of town and explained to her what happend when she met him at the back door. Sounds to me rather petty to file a complaint after you know the reason why he was there.

Step Child, I'd rather have to go to court for trespassing than to have a kidnap charge on me. If he had brought the child to his residence without Jenny's permission he might be facing a kidnap charge instead of trespassing since she has custody of the four boys.

Red Headed Step Child
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Red Headed Step Child 04/17/13 - 02:21 pm
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@ICL

I agree wholeheartedly - just wondering why, if that's what he was doing, did he not watch the game at his house if the divorce agreement specifically states he can't be at her house - does he not have visitation rights? Could this not have been something he could planned for ahead of time? It IS petty, all things considered, but surely he would know to have all his ducks in a row to try and keep situations like this from happening. He's not exactly out of the dog house, so to speak - so toeing the line will be in his best interest - especially if he plans to stay in public service. It's not fair...but it is what it is.

I know there's the old saying about a woman scorned - hopefully Jenny isn't one that would try to keep the children away from him..it's a shame that sometimes happens.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 04/17/13 - 02:20 pm
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Mark Sanford responds

Here is the text of a statement issued by Mark Sanford on April 17, 2013:
It’s an unfortunate reality that divorced couples sometimes have disagreements that spill over into family court. I did indeed watch the second half of the Super Bowl at the beach house with our 14 year old son because as a father I didn’t think he should watch it alone. Given she was out of town I tried to reach her beforehand to tell her of the situation that had arisen, and met her at the back steps under the light of my cell phone when she returned and told her what had happened.
“There is always another side to every story, and while I am particularly curious how records that were sealed to avoid the boys dealing with embarrassment are now somehow exposed less than three weeks before this election, I agree with Jenny that the media is no place to debate what is ultimately a family court matter, and out of respect for Jenny and the boys, I’m not going to have any further comment at this time"

Although I don't agree with Mark's pass behavior in his marriage....this situation seems to be about revenge and Jenny can say she doesn't care about his political race but I'm sure any angle she can get to make his life miserable, she will use.

burninater
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burninater 04/17/13 - 02:21 pm
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Leaving by the back door,

Leaving by the back door, cell phone as flashlight. Obviously, he knew he was engaging in trespass, but decided the law doesn't apply to him.

Goodness gracious, how many points of evidence are needed for some people to understand that in Mr. Sanford's ethics, personal gain is priority number one?

burninater
9785
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burninater 04/17/13 - 02:27 pm
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5
"while I am particularly

"while I am particularly curious how records that were sealed to avoid the boys dealing with embarrassment are now somehow exposed less than three weeks before this election"
------
Really, sealed to protect THE BOYS from embarrassment? Then why is Sanford embarrassed they're out 3 weeks before the election?

InChristLove
22481
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InChristLove 04/17/13 - 02:45 pm
4
1
Leaving by the back

Leaving by the back door.....in the south, I thought this was normal. Seems Jenny was coming in the back door, why not leave by the back door. As for cellphone for a flashlight....guess no one asked him why he was using his phone for a light.....I suppose by the time the game was over it was dark outside.

burn....I don't disagree that Mr. Sanford doesn't have the best reputation or that he isn't the perfect choice for husband of the year award but it does seem rather suspicious that charges were filed after he explained to his ex-wife why he was there. Ex's will always have issues in a divorce but my concern is what view this 14 year old will have on both parents.

If in fact his dad came to watch the game with him and the mother presses charges, what kind of effect or view will the son have towards the mom for putting the dad through this. Likewise, if the dad is lying about watching the game with the son, what kind of effect or view will the son have towards the dad. Divorce doesn't just effect the ex-wife or ex-husband....and it sure effects the children more when the dirty laundry is published in the news for the whole state or in this case, the nation, to read about.

If these records were suppose to be sealed so that the boys wouldn't be publicly embarassed, then how did they just now become public news. Also news about the $5,000 he didn't contribute to one of the son's college fund was published but nothing about the situation being rectified already was published so in turn it makes him look like a deadbeat dad, when in fact he has paid.

There is always her side, his side, and then there is the truth. Most times that's never heard.

dwb619
100525
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dwb619 04/17/13 - 05:28 pm
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"Under the Light of My Cell Phone"

Sounds like the title of a country music song.
You just can't make this stuff up.

jmo
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jmo 04/18/13 - 01:59 am
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Bottom line is......

the Divorce Settlement states he is not to be in her house without her permission. The Super Bowl being on television was not mentioned in the document.

InChristLove
22481
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InChristLove 04/18/13 - 05:16 am
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3
jmo, I totally agree that the

jmo, I totally agree that the divorce settlement was violated but let me ask you......if the house was on fire and the child inside, would you expect Mr. Sanford to stand outside and say, I can't go inside because it's against the divorce settlement.

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 04/18/13 - 06:46 am
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Mother out of town . . .

14-year-old left in beach house all alone . . .

Ms. Sanford should not be painting herself as all sanctimonious.

corgimom
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corgimom 04/18/13 - 08:03 am
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She is an angry, vengeful,

She is an angry, vengeful, bitter woman, who doesn't care about what is best for her children, just what is best for her. She wants to make him PAY.

And people wonder why he had an affair. My question is, what took him so long?

I would've given anything if my son's father had wanted to watch the Super Bowl with him. I would've loved it if my son's father took an interest in his life and what my son was doing, and what he liked. Boys need their father, and Jenny Sanford needs to get over herself and realize that. A mother cannot be a father.

And for all people know, the son called him, and begged him to come watch it with him.

One day, her sons are going to look at her and say "You kept me away from my father, you said bad things about my father, you caused trouble for my father." And she will pay, and pay dearly.

corgimom
36417
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corgimom 04/18/13 - 08:04 am
2
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A decent, honorable woman who

A decent, honorable woman who loved her children would respond to all inquiries with "No comment", because she would not want to hurt her children by discussing these personal matters with the press.

InChristLove
22481
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InChristLove 04/18/13 - 08:21 pm
0
0
Take it from someone who's

Take it from someone who's been through it......took my stepson until he was in his early 30's before he finally came to his father and told him he understood that his father wasn't really the bad guy. How I wish we could have those younger years back to do over again with him knowing what he knows now.

Totally agree there are some deadbeat dads out there but there are a lot of hateful, manipulating, unfaithful women out there also.

AutumnLeaves
9474
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AutumnLeaves 04/20/13 - 09:00 pm
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We're talking about the

We're talking about the Sanfords. Anyone's adultering husband who would tell the whole state government he is in one place when he was in another cheating on his wife, then tells the media the adulteress is his soul-mate before he is even divorced is lucky he ever sees his children again, never-mind is able to step into ex-wife's home again without permission or fear for his life. I think Mrs. Sanford has shown remarkable restraint under the circumstances in just legally addressing this. Mr. Sanford seems to think boundaries are for everyone else to observe except him. I know he knows better, he's just so used to breaking rules with little or no negative consequences he thinks he can just keep on doing it. I guess you'll get the results of the character you vote for.

AutumnLeaves
9474
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AutumnLeaves 04/20/13 - 09:16 pm
0
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IF she really is angry,

IF Mrs. Sanford really is angry, vengeful, bitter, as a poster above judges this ex-wife to be, have you ever considered having a philandering, lying, double-life husband who put a better-rested version of herself ahead of their marriage and children of their union blessed by God, might have generated those feelings? Who are you to know how she feels and if/or when any such feelings developed? If she really was all that you claim, I don't think he would still be here on this earth after that comment about his mistress being his soul-mate. That is nearly like taking a knife, plunging and twisting it into a woman's heart and soul. No, he's lucky that she went to the law instead of taking matters into her own hands when he broke part of the divorce agreement by coming into the home without her permission. These rules are for both their own protection; if he wises up, he'll abide by them. As for whatever happens in front of the children, HE needs to set an example. A good one! Not the one he has been setting. Then she wouldn't have to react the way she seems to have been FORCED to by his alleged misconduct.

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