Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Angelo Silent As Anti-Police Myths Unravel

Blue Voice Candidate For President Kevin Graham Vows To Take Up Evidence Of False Allegations Against Police...

Saying that the criminal justice system itself is on trial and that he “can’t imagine a more important criminal case,” a federal Magistrate Judge ruled last week that a vast body of evidence detailing the controversial investigative tactics of wrongful conviction activists must be turned over.

The ruling by Judge David Weisman came in the lawsuit by Alstory Simon against Northwestern University, a former professor at the school, and a private investigator. Simon is suing all three, claiming he was coerced in 1999 into confessing to a 1982 double murder as part of a plan by Northwestern investigators to exonerate Anthony Porter from death row.

Simon was released from prison in 2014 by Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez after a year-long review of his conviction. Alvarez assailed the conduct of Protess and Ciolino when she released Simon.

Porter’s release in 1999 paved the way for a litany of other exonerations from death row.

Now Simon’s federal lawsuit is challenging the thirty-year mythology about wrongful convictions and the claims of police misconduct. Simon’s lawsuit alleges a pattern of misconduct against former professor David Protess and private investigator Paul Ciolino spanning many cases over a long period of time.

Judge Weisman granted the vast majority of Simon’s demands for evidence in the case.

Corruption in the Anthony Porter case first surfaced through the writings of FOP Blue Voice candidate Martin Preib and retired Tribune journalist Bill Crawford.

Despite Judge Weismann’s statement about the magnitude of Simon’s lawsuit and his decision to compel defendants to fork over so much evidence, there was not one single Chicago journalist attending the hearing. Nor has any media outlet announced it since.

Tribune “journalists” Steve Mills, Jeremy Gorner, and Dave Heinzmann were not there, nor was Sun Times reporter Frank Main. Columnists like Eric Zorn couldn’t be found. Not even John Kass.

How ironic.

The slightest whisper of an allegation by the Department of Justice alleging police misconduct is echoed by the Chicago media in a kind of hysteria. It is cited in almost every article about the police thereafter with some caveat about a “pattern” of police misconduct. But a case in the federal courts contradicting the anti-police mythology of Chicago’s activist media­­—even one a judge says puts the entire criminal justice system on trial—can’t even generate a stringer reporter working part time.

It’s no mystery. Alstory Simon’s claims about being framed for a double murder also puts the Chicago media on trial, a trial the media clearly does not want to face. If Simon prevails in his lawsuit, how will the newspapers explain their conduct, their failure to adequately investigate his case and others?

Here’s a question none of the media want to face: If they got the Anthony Porter exoneration wrong, how many others did they get wrong? So the media simply ignores the story.

Talk about a “code of silence.”

But for how long can they do so?

In the hearing, it was discussed that attorneys may even depose the prosecutor, Dick Devine, who released Porter from custody and convicted Simon in 1999.

A former prosecutor deposed in a case that asserts a conspiracy in the wrongful conviction movement? That isn’t newsworthy to Chicago’s activist media?  

But the Simon lawsuit—and the evidence it may reveal—poses a giant burden to the FOP under Dean Angelo as well. The reason is that Angelo has been confronted with the evidence time and again that FOP members, current and retired, have been falsely accused. Yet Angelo has done nothing with the evidence, either with the media, the political establishment, or as legal strategy.

One would think that such evidence for a FOP president was a gift from heaven, a powerful tool to combat the incessant media hype vilifying his members.

But not for Angelo. Throughout the three years of his administration, Angelo let the media attack his members over and over as he ignored the evidence that these attacks are baseless.

In contrast, Blue Voice presidential candidate Kevin Graham has made fighting the corrupt media and their false allegations a top priority of his administration, taking on Preib as candidate for vice president on his slate.  

Three more years of an administration that stands on the sidelines while the members get burned, or a new administration that will dig for the facts speak out for the members?

Ballots go out February 15.