COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio Supreme Court Justice Pat DeWine’s wife filed for divorce on Friday, accusing her husband of “adultery, extreme cruelty and gross neglect of duty.”
In the filing, Rhonda Dayton DeWine also says she has struggled to support herself since February 2018, when ?her husband cut her off financially after “abruptly” moving out of the couple’s Cincinnati home.
“As a result of my limited resources, I have been unable to sustain even a semblance of the life to which my children and I have become accustomed,” she said.
Pat DeWine, elected to the Ohio Supreme Court in 2016, is the son of Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine. He previously was an appellate court judge in Cincinnati, and before that served as a Hamilton County Commissioner and a Cincinnati city councilman. The divorce filing says he now lives in a condo near Downtown Columbus that property records say is owned by Ohio First Lady Fran DeWine.
In a statement, DeWine spokesman Ryan Stubenrauch said: “This week, Justice DeWine’s wife filed for divorce in Hamilton County and they’ve been separated for approximately 18 months. As most Ohioans know from their own family experience, marital difficulties are always upsetting. Political gossip and false claims only make it worse. Out of respect for his family and children, Justice DeWine won’t be addressing this any further.”
James Moskowitz, a Cincinnati attorney representing Rhonda DeWine, did not immediately return a message seeking additional comment.
Rhonda DeWine in the divorce filing, filed Friday in Hamilton County, doesn’t elaborate on her claim of adultery. But she described enjoying a lavish lifestyle during her marriage with frequent vacations and high-dollar purchases.
“My husband comes from a prominent family in Ohio … The family has multiple businesses and substantial financial holdings, from which my husband benefits,” she said.
While she said her husband has continued to pay the couple’s mortgage, taxes, insurance and other bills, he only had provided her with $800, “received only through the assistance of my attorney.”
She said the Internet and cable were shut off in her house for lack of payment, forcing her teenage daughter to use public Wi-Fi to study for school.
Meanwhile, she said her husband as recently as 2017 made $228,484, an amount composed of his $160,491 Supreme Court salary, $17,509 from DeWine Enterprises, the family business, and $50,484 in capital gains from the Ohio Twine Co., another DeWine family business.
She said her husband convinced her to file for bankruptcy shortly after their 2010 marriage, limiting her access to credit. She also said her responsibilities as a political wife made it difficult for her to devote time to her business, a hair salon in Cincinnati which she said has struggled to generate steady income.
In the filing, Rhonda DeWine requests spousal support payments of $5,000 a month, if her husband were to continue covering the bills, or $8,000 a month if he does not. She also requests a $10,000 lump sum to cover debt she said she’s incurred since her husband moved out plus attorney fees.