King’s county elected prosecutor places a wake-up call to other prosecutors.
The all-but-certain election of Eric Gonzalez to a full term as Kings County district attorney places a wakeup call to other New York leaders, especially the lawmakers in Albany, to hold prosecutors accountable for the serious problems — not honest errors, but deliberate malfeasance — that land innocent people in prison.
Current laws in New York allow a prosecutor to withhold evidence and even lie about it with few consequences. When our lawmakers reconvene in January, they should pass a law punishing prosecutors who use deception and shady tactics to slant the scales of justice.
Four years ago, Kenneth Thompson ousted longtime DA Charles Hynes on the promise of making convictions in Brooklyn fairer. Thompson’s office then went to work correcting past injustices: Over the last three years, courts overturned 22 convictions.