A prosecutor's job is to see that justice is done. You don't need to read the American Bar Association guidelines or some other ethical treatise to figure that out. After all, lady justice is supposed to be blind and prosecutors are supposed to be her impartial guide dog. But this has changed.
I could write for hours, if not days, about cases which were motivated by a prosecutor's secondary interests, as opposed to searching for the truth. Then again, this is a blog and not a novel. By the time you have read this far, about 30% of your attention span has already been consumed elsewhere unless I write something catchy - and quick.
Let's quickly look at the Freddie Gray case is Baltimore. In April of 2015, Gray died in the back of a police van. Baltimore is a very racially divided city, and a very dangerous one. I know, I grew up there. After Gray's death, sections of the city burned to the ground as residents rioted, looted, and generally destroyed their own neighborhoods in protest.
Marilyn Mosby, Baltimore's elected State's Attorney and a woman with higher political aspirations, decided to criminally charge six police officers who were involved in the arrest of Gray, based upon legal theories which many experts consider a stretch of the imagination. Why did she do this? Simple.
1. To calm the public
2. To bolster her own career
In more than a year since Gray's death and the ensuing riots, four of the police officers have gone to trial on various charges including murder, manslaughter, and assault.
The results thus far:
- One hung jury
- Three Acquittals
The judge for all of these cases, Barry Williams, is a former DOJ prosecutor with years of experience in police misconduct and civil rights cases. After crucifying the prosecution for bringing charges that no first-year law school student would even dream up, Williams has sent a strong message to prosecutors that they are barking up the wrong tree and that they need to quit while they are ahead.
Why don't the trials stop?
Judges are often not shy. Who's going to tell them they are wrong? But Baltimore prosecutors seem undeterred to continue the witch hunt within their cities finest in order to make a political statement for their boss. In the meantime, a lead detective on the case has come out and testified that prosecutors tried to change her testimony so that the grand jury didn't hear the real evidence. This evidence adds to the belief that the prosecution was motivated by politics, as opposed to a search for the truth.
Often times in politically motivated cases, prosecutors and law enforcement try to save face. They won't admit that they were wrong, and they certainly won't admit failure. They will keep pushing forward to prove their point, despite a lack of evidence, all in an effort to foster their own agenda. It's about being right at all costs, even if those costs are to the taxpayers.
Politically Motivated Prosecutions Cost You Money
There are only so many resources to go around. While prosecutors are busy with cases that further their own interests, resources that should be expended on the real "bad guys" are diverted, often allowing the real criminals to go free. How much is the tab for prosecutor's misguided and failed work? Taxpayers will likely never know.
Also, it's no secret that Freddie Gray's family settled with the City of Baltimore for $6.4 million, before the criminal trials got under way. The ludicrous settlement was more than the total of all settlements paid out by Baltimore in the last 5 years.
Next come the lawsuits by the officers. And rightly so. One officer who was acquitted just got $84,000 in back pay for the time he was suspended during the prosecutor's witch hunt. Similar awards will follow.
Are you the subject of a politically motivated criminal investigation?
Jason Lamm has represented numerous individuals who were the subject of politically motivated prosecutions. Most recently, he obtained a complete dismissal of charges for Leslie Merritt, Jr., the alleged I-10 Freeway Shooter. Charged with drive-by shooting, aggravated assault, and other violent crimes, many believe that Merritt was arrested and charged only to calm public fears, even though there was no evidence against him. Jason Lamm is one of Arizona's top criminal defense lawyers who conducts details investigations of the allegations against his clients and searches for the truth. Personal and private consultations can be scheduled by calling (602) 663-9100 if you are facing serious criminal charges and are looking to hire an attorney whose experience and recent results may be your impartial guide dog when prosecutors are distracted by their own motivations.