Baby Steps

By Halina Schiffman-Shilo

As LASIS has previously reported, former Texas prosecutor and judge, Ken Anderson, was found guilty of prosecutorial misconduct in a murder case that put an innocent man behind bars for almost 25 years. Just this month, in a special court of inquiry, Mr. Anderson was sentenced to ten days in prison on charges of criminal contempt for lying about exculpatory evidence. As the New York Times points out, ten days in jail for taking away 25 years of one man’s life is a mere pittance. But in the world of prosecutorial misconduct, jail time for a deviant prosecutor is unprecedented.

And then there’s the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office, which has figured large in our discussion of guilty prosecutors. The New York Times recently reported that the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office, which, as we’ve previously discussed, was sued by Jabbar Collins for wrongfully convicting him of murder, is being investigated by federal authorities for forcing a newbie assistant district attorney to lie about the Jabbar Collins investigation while under oath.

If these accusations are true, not only did the new assistant district attorney commit perjury, which is a federal offense, but the senior attorneys who convinced the young lawyer to commit perjury  engaged in ethical misconduct as well, and can be disciplined by the New York State Bar. We expect they will be.

Mere baby steps on the road to change, perhaps, but we have reason to be cheered by seeing prosecutors being held to account.   That’s some good news on a very grim subject, just in time for the holidays.



2 Responses

  1. owen hogarth says:

    Cases like these causes the blue flame of anger to well within me.

    It seems that no matter the sector there are always these types of cases. Judges and prosecutors destroys a mans life and all that happens is 10 days in jail.

    This is no different than large banks ruining lives by selling faulty securities and destroying large swaths of the wealth in the world and in the end they pay what is the equivalent of 10 days in jail and the game goes on.

    Baby steps is an understatement. With issues like these examples need to be made, there should be stiffer punishment for those with this much power to damage society at large acting recklessly.

  2. andrews says:

    large banks … pay what is the equivalent of 10 days in jail

    Rather an unfair characterization. In fact, the large banks receive payments in the form of government bail-outs, and do not suffer the misfortune of paying.

Leave a Reply