The District Attorney’s first priority is providing equal justice for all, regardless of skin color. It’s just as true when it comes to the color of a uniform.
Vice journalist Daniel Denvir’s story, Why Cops Don’t Get Charged When They Lie, clearly outlines why the District Attorney’s Office must be taken in a new direction. While there are excellent attorneys in that office, there is also a culture that allows a small number of Philadelphia police officers to deprive the people of our city of their right to equal justice and to tarnish the majority of officers who uphold their oath to defend the Constitution and faithfully serve the public.
Mr. Denvir’s story also clearly demonstrates that there are officers who break the so-called ‘Blue Wall of Silence’ by doing the right thing. They are to be commended. The District Attorney’s Office needs to have their back. The silence (and sometimes the word) of my fellow candidates on this issue is revealing.
I have been pursuing Section 1983 lawsuits against police for police abuse, corruption, and false convictions for over 30 years. District Attorneys work under an ethical obligation to seek justice, and a constitutional limitation that requires disclosing exculpatory information (e.g. prior deception by witnesses that is known to the prosecutor).
If I am elected District Attorney, officers who lie in police paperwork and those who lie under oath would be disqualified from testifying.