Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Philly D.A. Rolled Out Red Carpet For Accused Serial Rapist

By Ralph Cipriano
for BigTrial.net

He's a dreadlocked former Boston prosecutor and charismatic advocate for criminal justice reform who became a rock star after a 2016 TED talk that got nearly three million views. Now he commands up to $20,000 for a live speaking engagement.

So in February, 2018, when Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner was kicking off his criminal justice revolution in Philadelphia, he invited Adam Foss to town to meet with his staff of young, eager and impressionable progressive prosecutors. Then, in September, 2018, Krasner brought back Foss in a bigger way, hiring Foss and his  nonprofit to lead a nine-week training session for new ADAs. 

Now, Adam Foss is under a criminal investigation announced by the county D.A.'s office in Boston where he used to work, after he was publicly accused by several women of being a serial predator and rapist who's knowingly spreading STDs. 

In Boston, the authorities are hot on Foss's tail. "I am aware of and troubled by the allegations that a former [Suffolk County District Attorney's Office] employee engaged in behavior that either was inappropriate, an abuse of his authority, unethical or illegal," declared Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins. "Every allegation will be investigated thoroughly."

But meanwhile, in Philadelphia, D.A. Krasner isn't talking about how much he paid Foss. Or whether he's launched an investigation to see if any of his impressionable young female staffers were abused and/or infected by Foss, when he was here in town, training prosecutors.  

Because Foss is a former prosecutor in the Suffolk County D.A.'s office, the investigation of Foss in Boston will be independently led by a private law firm, D.A. Rollins said, with the help of Boston police. 

The uproar in Boston began when Raegan Sealy, a writer and singer, who said she met Foss at a conference, wrote a long blog post entitled, "The Wolf and the Network." In that tell-all, Sealy claimed that she was raped in 2017 by Foss, who posed as a "progressive, liberal, acclaimed social justice advocate" but was in reality a predator. 

Foss has publicly acknowledged that his behavior has "caused many people anguish, but I deny any allegations of nonconsensual sexual relations," he said in a statement to WBUR, an NPR news station in Boston. After Sealy came out, women subsequently came forward on Twitter to claim that they too had been raped by Foss. 

Foss didn't have much more to say to the NPR station in Boston. 

“With respect to District Attorney Rachael Rollins’ recent statement referencing a pending investigation, I do not wish to compromise that process by commenting further," he wrote in his statement. "In addition, this is a more appropriate time for me to listen than to speak."

In her blog post, Sealy described her first impression of Foss, whom she engaged in backstage small talk, as a "strikingly good looking dude in a fitted 'FEMINIST' t-shirt." Then she went on stage where she was preceded by Jennifer Garner, Cynthia Nixon and Chelsea Manning. 

Foss was 12 years older when he met the then 25-year-old Sealy, who clearly had stars in her eyes. Sealy wrote that she was impressed when she heard about Foss's famous TED talk about criminal justice reform. Foss, Sealy said, was also a name dropper who bragged about a circle of friends that included Oprah, Jeff Bezos, and John Legend.

In her blog post, Sealy described exchanging nude pictures with Foss, making out with him, and during one night in his hotel room, getting naked and cuddling with him. But, she wrote, she drew the line at sex, because she claimed he was drunk. Later that night, she claims she woke up while Foss was raping her.

"I felt humiliated, used and stupid," she wrote. "Slowly, it sank in that I had not only been raped, but also essentially groomed, conned into believing I had a friendship with somebody who really had a game plan the whole time."

Then, Sealy wrote, she discovered there were at least an initial dozen other alleged victims who told her that Foss "was emotionally corrupt and inappropriately wields his power," and that he "deliberately targets married women." 

The women Sealy talked to also alleged that Foss "has STDs and doesn't disclose it, and doesn't bother to use condoms." 

The quotes above were from a group of professional women who "had connected over their experiences with Adam," Sealy wrote. The group wrote a joint letter of complaint to a publisher who had given Foss a book deal, but the women got no response, Sealy wrote. 

Sealy concluded her blog post by saying she had learned that "behind Adam the feminist lives Adam the rapist." And "Adam the destroyer."

"Most of the women I’ve met who’ve had bad experiences with Adam are scared to speak up about them because of who he is, and because (in many cases) he technically didn’t do 'anything illegal,' " Sealy wrote.

"So we’re left to rely on this whisper network; privately warning other women of this destroyer, if and when we can."

"Sure, Adam knowingly spreads disease," Sealy wrote. "He deceives. He cheats. He physically and emotionally coerces women into consent they would likely not otherwise give. He withholds important information, and actively lies, further rendering the conditions of this consent invalid."

"He targets women in professional settings, leveraging his position as a leader and role model to gain our trust. He creates intense emotional ensnarements, embroiling women into not recognizing this abuse as it happens, or even being able to articulate it particularly well in retrospect."

"I wrote this for the women who’ve been lied to, infected, manipulated, violated, gaslit, 'played:' whose experiences sit in the grey area of legal inhumanity," Sealy wrote. "Your stories are valid. You are not alone."

"I wrote this for those who have known Adam, for those I hope never will, and for those who continue to enable and support him."

[Attention, Larry Krasner, she's talking to YOU.]

"Whispers do not stop wolves," Sealy concluded. "It’s time to shout."

Here's what we know about Foss's time in Philadelphia.

D.A. Krasner hired Prosecutor Impact, a nonprofit founded by Adam Foss, to "pilot a program in the Philadelphia District Attorney's office which involves education reform for prosecutors," according to the United Way. 

While Foss was in Philly, the United Way sponsored a "Poverty  and the Justice System; A Public Forum With Adam Foss" on Oct. 30, 2018, at the Arch Street Presbyterian Church. In their announcement of the forum, United Way said it was "excited to welcome national Expert Adam Foss." 

"Please join us for an intellectually stimulating conversation about how the justice system impacts community safety and health."

Another promoter of the forum was The Philadelphia Citizen, led by co-founder Larry Platt, which hailed Foss as a "criminal justice reformer and former prosecutor." The Citizen, under Platt's visionary activism, urged readers to "do something" by attending the public forum to hear Foss. Hopefully, there weren't too many vulnerable females there who took Platt's advice.


Foss became a celebrity for his TED talk where he detailed how prosecutors are "judged internally by our convictions and our trial wins, so prosecutors aren't really incentivized to be creative or to take risks on people we might not otherwise."

In Philadelphia, Foss and his team brought prosecutors on a field trip to visit a prison and talk to men who were given life sentences as teenagers. Foss's team also sponsored a sleepover for prosecutors at a homeless shelter.

Isn't that progressive? And Krasner was down with all of it.

"We want people who are about to exercise their discretion and deal with the realities of homelessness and addiction and mental illness and danger, to have been in the vicinity of and to have spoken to some homeless people," Krasner told medium.com. 

On Feb. 7, 2018, the Philly D.A.'s office put out a series of Tweets about how Adam Foss spoke to "our staff today about the need for prosecutors to use their great power and discretion to build people up and talk to those most impacted by the criminal justice system," sent out under the hashtag #RestorativeJustice.

In another tweet, the D.A.'s office posted photos of young, impressionable prosecutors asking Foss questions after "his excellent presentation today. Thank you so much for your time, Adam!," the D.A's office wrote.

In another tweet, the Philly D.A.'s office quoted Foss as saying, "Why are we convinced that the current practice of police and prosecution are keeping us safe, when the communities most impacted by both are the most unsafe?"

Now, the question in the Philly D.A.'s office, is, were any of those impressionable young prosecutors victimized after they were exposed by Larry Krasner to an alleged serial predator, rapist and STD spreader? 

Krasner isn't talking. As is typical for him, Krasner did not respond to a request for comment. Neither did Jane Roh, his alleged spokesperson. 

Krasner and Roh also did not respond to a request to disclose how much public money Krasner spent to bring Foss to town, and how much money the D.A.'s office paid to Foss's organization, so he could "train" Krasner's young prosecutors.

In the Boston media, the Boston Globe, NPR and boston.com were all over the Adam Foss me too scandal. But here in Philadelphia, only Big Trial seems to think it's a story.

Ralph Cipriano can be reached at ralph@bigtrial.net.

5 comments

  1. If the Suffolk County DA does a good job at a successful prosecution he won't have to travel far to do his prison talks.

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  2. Being a gifted speaker can be inspirational or a charismatic seduction of those who are gullible, lonely and looking for the comfort of some type of affection or acknowledgment. Take the Jones event, most serial rapist have a following even in prison. Whatever the reason Krasner should have vented better and found local help if he felt the need for a speaker on Justice reform especially as that was his platform and so far it has proven a failure.

    ReplyDelete
  3. So Larry Platt was removed from his Positions at the Philadelphia Daily News and PhillyMag for the deviant behavior that pushed Jeffrey Toobin to the curb at The New Yorker and made him the Grand Poobah at the CNN Circle Jerks.

    The Big Problem with Krasner is that he has a fondness for Hiring and Associating with Deviants while 'beating his meat' and wrongfully prosecuting Police who are performing their sworn duties

    ReplyDelete
  4. Happy Thanksgiving, Ralph. Thank you for all the hard work you have done in speaking the truth. Honest men are hard to find. Your ancestors would be proud of you, as are the rest of us.

    ReplyDelete

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