District 16 Del. Ariana Kelly Charged With Indecent Exposure, Trespassing
Incident on June 27 in Bethesda was reportedly related to a domestic dispute
Del. Ariana Kelly pictured here at an event in 2013
Updated- 10:20 a.m., Wednesday – State Del. Ariana Kelly was arrested last month in Bethesda and charged with indecent exposure and trespassing, according to online court records.
District Court charging documents state Kelly, 38, was dropping off her children at the home of her ex-husband, Barak Sanford, around 3:20 p.m. June 27 when she became angry that Sanford’s fiancée was inside the home.
At that time, according to the police account, Kelly started ringing the doorbell repeatedly and banging on the door. The charging documents state Sanford played a cell phone video for police that showed Kelly ringing the doorbell "numerous times," exposing her breasts in the direction of Sanford’s cell phone camera, and then "with one breast in each hand [shaking] them up and down.’”
The documents state Sanford recorded Kelly through a glass door.
Responding police asked Kelly to leave, according to the documents, but she asked them to arrest her. The officer reportedly told Kelly she could be arrested for indecent exposure and Kelly responded, "'arrest me then,' and put both her her wrists out to the officer." The Washington Post first reported the details of the documents.
Kelly, when reached by phone Tuesday afternoon, said she couldn't comment on the case and directed questions to her attorney.
Kelly’s attorney, former State Del. Luiz Simmons, told Bethesda Beat Tuesday afternoon that Kelly plans to dispute the allegations in court.
“Ariana is vigorously disputing the allegations,” Simmons said. “We will be in court in the next month. Divorce is very painful and punishing, even for members of the General Assembly. This arose out of a private dispute between Ariana and her ex-husband… and unfortunately it’s now where it is.”
Kelly and Sanford divorced in Nov. 2014, according to online court records.
Kelly was reelected for one of three District 16 delegate seats last year. The Bethesda native has served the area as a delegate since 2011.
Del. Shane Robinson, the chair of the Montgomery County House delegation, said he is supporting his colleague. Kelly was elected as the delegation's caucus chair when Robinson was chosen for the chair position in December.
"From my perspective," Robinson said, "it's a private family matter and I expect it's going to be resolved appropriately."
Robinson said the initial reports about the case lack context about Kelly's divorce from Sanford.
"It's a very private matter we're talking about," Robinson said. "Readers have no background on any of that information, I think that's the unfortunate thing."
He said Kelly has been a strong advocate for Maryland families in the General Assembly and called the charges "a distraction."
"I think she's an excellent person that has Maryland families at heart and has done a lot of work in the legislature to advance our goals of making this state a better place for families and children," Robinson said. "She's a great member, she's done a lot of good work and for me that's hugely important."