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When Prosecutors Cross the Line

The innocent can wind up in prison. The guilty can be set free. But New York City prosecutors who withhold evidence, tolerate false testimony or commit other abuses almost never see their careers damaged.

Featured

Lasting Damage: A Rogue Prosecutor’s Final Case

Claude Stuart, after a career full of trouble as a prosecutor in Queens, finally went too far when he lied to a judge in an effort to convict a man of murder.

Who Polices Prosecutors Who Abuse Their Authority? Usually Nobody

The innocent can wind up in prison. The guilty can be set free. But New York City prosecutors who withhold evidence, tolerate false testimony or commit other abuses almost never see their careers damaged.

Other Entries

Millions for New York Man Wrongly Convicted of Murder

The award of $4.5 million by New York state is just part of a claim by a man who spent more than two decades in prison based on a dishonest prosecution.

Trial And Error: A Man Convicted of Murder Wins Release, and Questions of Responsibility Linger

It turns out Brooklyn prosecutors for years hid the evidence Ruddy Quezada had sought to win a new trial. Who should pay?

New York State to Pay Millions in Wrongful Conviction Case

A Brooklyn man who spent more than a dozen years in prison for a crime he likely did not commit will receive $3 million from New York State. He may get even more from New York City.

For a Respected Prosecutor, An Unpardonable Failure

Evidence of a convicted murderer’s possible innocence sat buried in a case file for more than two decades. Now, a prosecutor in Brooklyn will have to answer for the mistake.

Startling Sidebar: Brooklyn Judge Gave Political Advice to Borough’s Top Prosecutor

A New York City Department of Investigation report documents a shocking coziness between the two top law enforcement officials in Brooklyn.

Attorney General Holder Requires Recording of Interrogations, Unlike New York City

A new Department of Justice policy says federal agents must record interrogations, as a way to protect against coercion and false confessions.

Brooklyn Man Walks Out of Court, Cleared of Murder After 24 Years in Prison

Jonathan Fleming and his family were overjoyed today after the Brooklyn District Attorney dismissed murder charges against him based on evidence withheld at his 1990 trial.

Brooklyn DA Moves to Free Man after Long-Buried Evidence Surfaces

Jonathan Fleming has served more than 24 years in prison for a 1989 murder. Now it has emerged that law enforcement had evidence all along showing he was in Florida at the time of the shooting.

For Brooklyn Prosecutor, a Troubled Last Term, and a Trail of Lingering Questions

It may take years to assess the lasting damage of Charles J. Hynes’ final term as Brooklyn district attorney.

Missing: A Boy and The Evidence Against His Accused Killer

Three decades after 6-year-old Etan Patz disappeared, police suddenly had a suspect. Then they chose not to record his interrogation, a decision that could affect their case.

Polarizing Brooklyn Prosecutor Retires Amid Scrutiny

Top Brooklyn prosecutor Michael Vecchione is retiring his post after a career spanning more than two decades. He leaves a troubling legacy, including allegations that he convicted an innocent man of murder in a case that could cost New York City millions.

For Brooklyn Prosecutor, a Rare Reversal at the Polls

Prosecutors in New York tend to get elected and stay elected, often for decades. The career of Charles Hynes in Brooklyn invites the question: How long is too long?

For Prosecutor Under Fire, A Verdict at the Polls

It’s been nearly 60 years since an incumbent district attorney in New York City has been removed from office via the vote. Joe Hynes in Brooklyn could be in danger of breaking the streak.

A Powerful Legal Tool, and Its Potential for Abuse

For years, prosecutors in New York have been using what are known as material witness orders to compel testimony from reluctant witnesses in criminal trials. But has the power to persuade led to coercion and tainted convictions?

Less Than Total Recall

A prominent Brooklyn prosecutor, forced to testify under oath about allegations that he had railroaded a possibly innocent man in a murder case 18 years ago, said he had trouble remembering much about the case.

Watching the Detectives: Will Probe of Cop’s Cases Extend to Prosecutors?

A review of 50 Brooklyn murder prosecutions could free men from prison and ruin the reputation of the former detective who helped make the cases. Some insist the prosecutors who worked alongside the accused detective should not be spared scrutiny.

Objection Overruled: Top Prosecutor Must Testify in Wrongful Conviction Case

Brooklyn District Attorney Charles J. Hynes will be deposed by the lawyer for a man who has accused Hynes of running a prosecutor’s office where misconduct is condoned, even rewarded. Hynes, who has denied the allegation, had sought to avoid answering questions under oath, but a federal judge ruled that he must.

Problem Witness: A Case to Make Prosecutors Personally Accountable

Alexina Simon was picked up as a witness in a minor criminal case. Prosecutors in Queens held her over two days without a lawyer. Now, she wants to make them pay for what she says was misconduct.

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