Cook County Prosecutor Anita Alvarez
This is the type of blog post that really won't make much sense unless you watch the video below the fold. It's the most important video I've shared in months and masterfully illustrates just why Chicago prosecutor Anita Alvarez is not to be trusted when it comes to prosecuting police officers. It's a recent segment from 60 Minutes
Please watch it, then join me below the video for a discussion on why it's absolutely possible that she deliberately tanked the case against Chicago Police Department Officer Dante Servin in the shooting death of Rekia Boyd.
If you are down here, I assume you watched the video. What the Chicago Police Department and Cook County prosecutors did to those young men is an American travesty. Just kids, they were ripped from their homes, forced into false confessions for rapes and murders they didn't commit, and then sent off to prison to die.
Twenty years later, DNA not only proved them to be completely innocent, but directly implicated the other fully grown career criminals who actually raped and murdered people but never paid the price for it.
In spite of overwhelming DNA evidence, in spite of a dozen attorneys from The Innocence Project who took these cases on pro bono, in spite of judges setting these men free and giving them certificates of innocence, Anita Alvarez absolutely refused to let go of them being guilty. She refused to accept that officers forced confessions. She even went so far as to say that even though NO DNA from any of the six kids who were sent to prison was ever found on or even near any victims, the DNA that was found INSIDE of the victims could've gotten there after they died. She literally suggested that career rapists randomly found dead bodies in fields and had sex with them, but she was completely unwilling to implicate any officers or imply that those who were jailed were done wrong.
In what many people across the country thought was an open-and-shut case of a police officer clearly murdering a completely innocent, unarmed person, Anita Alvarez was the lead prosecutor against Officer Dante Servin in the shooting death of Rekia Boyd.
On March 21, 2012, Rekia Boyd and three of her friends were walking to a store together. Dante Servin, an off-duty police officer, was nearby in his car, and claimed that they were too loud and that he told the group to be quiet. The officer, still in the car, then fired five shots over his shoulder and struck Rekia Boyd in the head and her boyfriend, Antonio Cross, in the hand.
Officer Servin used the virtually unbeatable claim that he feared for his life because he saw Antonio Cross reach into his waistband and pull out a gun. Except Antonio Cross didn't have a gun. Nobody there had a gun except for Officer Dante Servin. Nobody reached in a waistband and pulled out a gun. The entire defense was completely imagined.
All of the people who witnessed the shooting testified to these facts, but on Monday Judge Dennis Porter shocked the country and dismissed all charges against Dante Servin. In his ruling, Judge Porter blasted Prosecutor Alvarez for undercharging Officer Servin
Judge Dennis Porter ruled that prosecutors failed to prove that Dante Servin acted recklessly, saying that Illinois courts have consistently held that anytime an individual points a gun at an intended victim and shoots, it is an intentional act, not a reckless one. He all but said prosecutors should have charged Servin with murder, not involuntary manslaughter.
Servin cannot be retried on a murder charge because of double-jeopardy protections, according to his attorney, Darren O'Brien.
Are you following what Judge Porter said?
Rekia Boyd was shot in the head and killed by Officer Servin three years ago. Judge Porter said that it is widely known that if someone intentionally points and shoots a gun, it's not reckless, but intentional, yet somehow this was lost on the prosecutor? She had three whole years to get this charge right.
Are we to believe that Anita Alvarez was unaware of this legal interpretation? She's a lifelong prosecutor! She knew. It is my belief that she deliberately undercharged Servin in this case. A police officer has not been charged in a shooting death in Chicago in over two decades, and any prosecutor who becomes the first attorney to convict one could've never remained in power.
If Anita Alvarez lacked the moral courage to speak honestly about six young men who had their lives ruined by her office, I sincerely don't put anything past her.
She tanked this case.