Brian X. McCrone

Krasner Highlights End of ‘Win-at-All-Costs' Criminal Justice in Philadelphia

The city district attorney, seemingly assured of a second term after his Democratic primary victory last month, released a report Tuesday noting the 21 exonerations and ongoing reviews by his office since he took office in 2018.

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Larry Krasner, a month removed from his big win in the Democratic primary election that all but assures him a second term starting next January, released a comprehensive report on exonerations that have occurred since he took office in 2018.

There have been 21 wrongly convicted men released from state prison since Philadelphia's progressive district attorney took office, and the report also illuminated the dozens of ongoing case reviews still ongoing by the Conviction Integrity Unit.

Krasner created the CIU in 2018 and hired an attorney from Texas to head the unit, which now has more than a dozen assistant district attorneys assigned to it. Krasner noted Tuesday that he is in the process of hiring two more "executive-level" prosecutors to expand the work of the CIU.

"(This report is) about a criminal justice system that for decades put winning cases first and put justice second, that for decades put politics first and justice second," Krasner said of the report titled "Overturning Convictions -- and an Era."

Here are 10 wrongly-convicted men who have reached a settlement with the City of Philadelphia since they were exonerated, as of June 15. Other lawsuits remain pending against the city.

"In my view, the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office and the Philadelphia Police Department have historically violated their sworn oaths to uphold the Constitution, seek justice, and protect and serve Philadelphians. Too often, they engaged in and tolerated horrendous abuses of power," Krasner wrote in the report. "[A] fair number of Philadelphia prosecutors, driven by a win-at-all-cost office culture, covered for or participated in these abuses."

Krasner is being challenged by Republican candidate Charles Peruto Jr. in the November general election, and is expected to win a second term due to Democrats' 7-to-1 majority over Republicans in Philadelphia.

Pennsylvania does not compensate wrongly convicted people who are exonerated and freed from prison after decades behind bars. Here is the full report released Tuesday:

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