The DA's Office Is Really Going To Hurt The Pursuit of Justice in Philly With Their "No Call" list f

Discussion in 'Local and State' started by JimofPennsylvan, Jun 8, 2018.

  1. JimofPennsylvan

    JimofPennsylvan Well-Known Member

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    The District Attorney's Office has good intentions about expanding its police witness "Do Not Call" list but if the media reports are accurate it will be a disaster in its implementation. There is good intentions there because a smart DA's Office wants to get ahead of the problem when the DA's Office uses a police witness in its prosecution case where the defendant is found guilty and it is a serious case where it later comes out that the police witness has something in his or her record that makes the person a not credible witness and the DA's office had other police witnesses available it did not call as witnesses for its prosecution that did not have credibility problems the DA's Office wouldn't be fully responsible if they did not try to avoid this ruinous problem for its prosecution. The problem seems to be in the DA's approach it doesn't seem to fully consider that there is different degrees of wrongfulness that might exist in a police witnesses record. By that I mean police officers are human meaning they make mistakes like everyone else just because they made a mistake doesn't mean they are not credible witnesses. for instance, police officers deal with the public and anyone that extensively deals with the public and is honest would recognize that there are members of the public that can provoke one into a fight some members of the public have a flippant attitude and act like real jerks and it is understandable a police officer could be baited into assaulting them although it is never a defense such a wrongdoing by a police officer does not make the police officer a not credible witness. Another instance relates to the reality that being a police officer is a very stressful job so like people throughout society they deal with it through the consumption of alcohol so it is completely understandable although no defense that a police officer could have a DUI conviction in his or her record and again such an understandable offense does not make that officer a not credible witness. The point here is that the DA's Ofiice should not be calling this list the "No Call" list or the "Bad Witness" list because in doing so they will be cutting their own throat so to speak or in other terms poisoning their case. Call the list the "Witness list where they have a record that makes them vulnerable from an impeachment standpoint" or the "witness list where they have a record that has significant cross-examination evidence in it" something not so fatal from a credibility standpoint. Because there will be those cases which are serious cases where the Commonwealth in order to meet their burden of proof at trial will have to call one of these police witnesses because no other witness saw what that witness saw or heard what that witness heard and the name of this list could really undermine the case. What is meant is that Defense Attorneys could have a field day with this name you easily envision the scenario at closing argument in front of the jury where the defense attorney argues the prosecutor called the police witness because that witness's testimony is vital to the Commonwealth case well let us all remember that this police witness is on the DA's Office "No Call" list and why is he on that no call list because people in the DA's Office don't think that witness should be called at trial to testify because they believe he is not credible so why ladies ad gentlemen of the jury should you find that witness credible when the DA's Office itself doesn't find the police witness credible!



    The other problem with the DA's Office "No Call" list plan is that they plan to add police officers and detectives to that list that Judges find not credible in cases that go to trial; if the DA's Office does this they will be showing they lack experience and/or judgment. When a judge and/or jury finds that a police office or detective was not credible it doesn't mean that they found the police witness lied or perjured themselves. Listen most police officer and detectives have a hundred plus type of the same case whether it be stolen care, drug delivery, etc. type of case and they often are testifying at trial months and even years after the actual incident occurred it is completely understandable that they could get mixed up or become hazy on the facts. Plus many cases turn on the simple issue does the finder of fact believe the police witness or the defendant and in many cases the defendant has good character that is no criminal record and so the judge or jury may give the defendant the benefit of the doubt and find the defendant credible over the police that is again not to say the police lied. Moreover, criminal trials bring all the draw backs of human nature with them. In the Philadelphia Criminal Justice system there is a limited number of Judges and limited number of police officers and detectives and from prior cases they often know one another well and it can be the case where a Judge doesn't like a police officer from that police officer's behavior in another case or that officer's attitude during a previous trial and that could mean the Judge gives the benefit of the doubt to the defendant in the current case and finds the police witness not credible. In fact, Judges have found a police witness not credible because the Judge found the Prosecutor in the case didn't do a good job the prosecutor should have done more investigation etc.. Great injustices will be done to good police officers and good detectives if the DA's Office starts adding their names to the list because Judges from the bench say they are not credible!
     
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  2. ShoshTrvls

    ShoshTrvls Well-Known Member

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    The "no call" list has been in existence for a long time, it is just that previously, it was secret and now it is not. And keeping it a secret, many would argue, violated the constitution in that defendants were not provided with potentially exculpatory evidence (namely, that the involved officer was known to plant evidence, lie on the stand, etc.) The list of lawsuits and private settlements now arising from the secret existence of the list is getting longer every day, and is, in fact, one of the reasons the PA Supreme Court directed Meek Mill's release.

    It isn't that there shouldn't be a list, it is that the officers on the list, if they can't be fired, should be given, at best, desk duty.
     
  3. Jayfar

    Jayfar I'm very oldĀ®

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  4. ShoshTrvls

    ShoshTrvls Well-Known Member

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  5. Hospitalitygirl

    Hospitalitygirl Resident Ornery Bitch

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    You think?
     

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