Family feud host and family feud host Joy Behar was found guilty on Thursday of misdemeanor domestic violence charges stemming from a confrontation with her former husband, who she had a long-running feud with.
The trial ended with jurors finding her guilty of endangering the welfare of a child.
The jury deliberated for about two hours before finding Behar guilty of one count of endangers the welfare or health of a minor, one count each of endanger the welfare and the child, and one count apiece of enduring a physical abuse and battery.
Behar’s attorney, Robert DeCarlo, said in a statement after the verdict that he was disappointed with the outcome, but said he hopes Behar will be vindicated.
“The verdict is a vindication of her claim of domestic violence, which was based on a false narrative,” he said.
“I am hopeful that the jury will not reach a verdict that will make Joy Behan guilty of the very serious charges that she had before the court.”
The jury found Behar not guilty on all charges, and Behar received a five-year prison sentence.
She was convicted on one count related to her husband’s alleged abuse of a 12-year-old girl.
The incident occurred in 2013, when Behar and her ex, Scott Sperling, 32, were living in California.
Spering was sentenced to a year in prison in January 2018 for sexual battery and other charges.
Both men pleaded guilty to misdemeanor domestic abuse charges in January and were sentenced to six months in jail.
They were also ordered to perform 200 hours of community service.
In an interview with the Palm Beach Post in August 2018, Behar described the time Sperlings “knew he was a predator” and called him a “predator who will never forgive” for abusing her.
She described the incident in the interview as a “rough day” and said that Sperlsings “would get angry and he would say things like ‘I don’t want you around.'”
In his sentencing memorandum, District Judge John D. Carrigan Jr. described the emotional breakdown she experienced in the months following the incident as “deeply distressing” and noted that “it is not uncommon to experience extreme emotional breakdowns following domestic violence incidents, particularly in a long term relationship.”
“Joy was not alone,” Carrigan wrote.
“She was in close contact with the police and others.”
Behar has a 3-year old daughter, Tawny, who attends a private school in Florida.
“Joy’s ex was very violent and abusive, and was abusive to her children and the children’s mother,” Behar told The Post in 2018.
“That’s not her personality, that’s not who she is.”
Behr’s lawyer, Brian L. Womack, told The Palm Beach Press in October 2018 that the woman’s mother, who was also involved in the domestic dispute, was “shocked and horrified” by the violence, but did not report it to authorities.
The mother, however, was not charged, according to Womak.
Behr told the newspaper that the family “gave up on each other and lost hope” when Sperlin was arrested.
“It was the worst, most horrific experience of my life,” Behr said.
She said she suffered from depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts.
“We were just trying to do what we had to do, to make our children happy, to keep them safe,” Behary said.
The Post reported in 2018 that Behar filed for divorce in October of 2018.
She filed for a permanent restraining order against Sperlins in December 2018, and he was arrested on Friday, Oct. 31, 2018, in Florida after an investigation revealed he had previously abused two children.
Spermlings pleaded no contest to two misdemeanor counts of child abuse and was sentenced in January to two years probation, according, to the Palm County Sheriff’s Office.
The charges related to a 2012 incident in which Sperlis allegedly choked and punched a 12 and a half-yearold girl after the girl tried to run away from the abuse.
The sheriff’s office said the case was brought to the attention of police because of the “disturbing circumstances.”
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