Most of the leading cases in the U.S. Supreme Court involving the constitutional rights of criminal suspects are about Black defendants. No other ethnic group is more abused by law enforcement agents in the Untied States. The cases are legion and they include but are not limited to Dempsey v. Moore, Powell v. Alabama (Scottsboro Boys’ case), Mapp v. Ohio and Terry v. Ohio.
Blacks are in dire need of legal representation but legal representation is a double-edge sword. There is not only a legal right to legal representation but also a legal duty for a Black suspect to enjoy it. Reciprocity is an essential part of legal representation. To represent Blacks, lawyers must do so “zealously” and “competently” as is required by the Code of Professional Responsibility and the Sixth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. This means, in a racist, criminal justice system, sacrificing yourself for your client.
It is not enough for only attorneys to know the law. Because Blacks constitute a targeted population, it is essential that the knowledge of law must be permeated throughout the Black community. Otherwise, Blacks are gullible and susceptible to miscarriages of justice. When white men rise to the level of slavemasters, Blacks automatically become obedient.
A case in point is Tawana Brawley. New York suppressed the autopsy report of Police Officer Harry Crist, Jr. until the defamation trial in 1998 in Poughkeepsie, NY. This is unusual in a civil action. In the meantime, NYS Attorney General Robert Abrams said, in 1988, that suicide was the manner of his death. Harry Crist had been identified by Tawana Brawley as one of her rapists.
In 1990, New York “barred” me from the practice of law for saying that Crist’s death was a homicide. His autopsy report agreed with me. It was Abrams who was lying. Yet, Bob Abrams is still practicing law while I am “barred” from the practice of law for telling the truth. It has escaped most Blacks that this violates the equal protection of the laws. My capital offense was disputing a white man. This is a no-no under the slave codes. New York permits judges to try cases off the books. I was tried for sedition in Poughkeepsie, NY even though the charge in the complaint was defamation.
When New York ruled in 1988 that Glenda Brawley would have to testify against her daughter despite the parent-child relationship, it was a foregone conclusion that the master-slave relationship still applied in the criminal justice system. Blacks have to obey whites. Some Black parents are not teaching this rule to their children. They are also not being vocal against slavery. This has allowed for a “Trayvon Martin” and a “Jordan Davis”.
In 1990, the Brooklyn Disciplinary Committee demanded that I elevate the master-slave relationship over the attorney-client privilege. When I refused, the Brooklyn Disciplinary Committee simply told the Black community that I had refused to cooperate with a disciplinary investigation. Blacks, including Rev. Al Sharpton, refused or failed to understand this privilege. Only Rev. Sharpton monopolized it. It was his privilege in 1990.
No one in the Black community demanded that New York identify the complainant. If this question had been raised, the answer would have been the New York Legislature. No client was willing to testify against me. A disgruntled client has to have a grievance. This is a requirement under NY Judiciary Law § 90. No client of mine has ever been short-changed. This is a critical element of a grievance.
The Dutchess County district attorney’s office, by law, handed the Tawana Brawley investigation to New York State with specific and mandated instructions to investigate ADA Steven Pagones and Harry Crist, Jr., a police officer, among others. Abrams suppressed this document which, in January 1988, had identified Pagones as a suspect. Judge Judith Hillary vouched for the letter’s accuracy at trial.
The grand jury investigation and report showed that Abrams immediately flipped the script and turned the attention of the Dutchess County grand jury to Alton Maddox, C. Vernon Mason, Al Sharpton and Tawana Brawley for accusing white men of rape. Abrams had exceeded his statutory authority. In slavery, it would have been a crime for Blacks to have engaged in this recalcitrant conduct. See Celia A. Slave. It is still a crime in New York.
This was not only an obstruction of justice but it was also a perversion of the grand jury process which is outlined under Article 190 of the New York Criminal Procedure Law. Under this law, Pagones is, specifically, a proper subject for a grand jury investigation and a grand jury report. Pagones was a public servant. Abrams was only interested in violations of the slave codes.
Article 190 specifically provides that when a crime has been committed and that a suspect has been identified, there must be a grand jury investigation. In 1988, Abrams publicly stated that Tawana was under 16 when the rape had been committed and she could not have been the victim of statutory rape. His antiquated view goes back to slavery. Black women should have been incensed. Instead, most of them used me for target practice.
On March 15, 2014, a criminal inquiry was opened into missing Flight 370. This happened on March 8, 2014 without any evidence of a crime. A jet plane was missing. President Barack Obama ordered the Federal Bureau of Investigation to join the posse on March 19, 2014 although there were only three U.S. citizens aboard the flight.
On October 4, 2013, a fourteen year-old autistic student, Avonte Oquendo, went missing from public school. In January 2014, his remains were washed ashore off College Point in northern Queens. The school system had obviously been negligent if not criminal in its care of Oquendo. The New York Department of Education knew that he was prone to running away from school. All school personnel, and members of UFT, are suspects. New York’s compulsory attendance laws required that he attend a public school. This is a Catch-22.
Mayor William de Blasio has chosen to whitewash and cover-up his death by refusing to initiate a grand jury investigation. Only a grand jury can return criminal charges and issue a grand jury report invoking legislative action which is obviously necessary for the protection of school children. What is Mayor de Blasio hiding?
Instead, Mayor de Blasio has appointed Richard J. Condon to initiate an administrative action through a report which must fall short of initiating any criminal action or recommending any legislative action. Stated differently, this report, which was issued yesterday, March 27, 2014, is toothless.
No attorney who is seeking retirement income is going to risk it to effectively represent the Black community. Moreover, no attorney who seeks to keep his or her nose “clean” is going to competently and zealously represent the Black community. Only a person who is willing to risk his or her law license, health insurance and retirement income will even seek to competently and zealously represent Blacks. There are very few “sacrificial lambs” in the