Monday, December 7, 2020

D.A.'s 'Graduates' Get Out Of Jail, Commit Murder & Mayhem

By Ralph Cipriano

When it comes to prosecuting gun crimes, the "progressive" policies of District Attorney Larry Krasner have resulted in putting more armed and dangerous criminals right back on the streets, so they can commit more crimes. 

To document the disastrous effects of Krasner's policies, Big Trial has been tracking the voyage through the criminal justice system of 231 defendants arrested for gun crimes in just one month, July of 2019.

Court records show that of the 231 defendants charged in July of 2019 with a gun crime, technically known as a Violation of the Uniform Firearms Act [VUFA], 73, or 32%, got a free ticket out of jail after the charges against them were either dropped, dismissed or lost by the D.A.'s office. 

Of the remaining defendants, only 45, or 19% out of the original 231 wound up pleading guilty, but the guilty pleas didn't amount to much jail time, because every convicted criminal got a deal from their "Uncle Larry." How good of a deal? Well, out of the 45 defendants who pleaded guilty, 40 got lenient county jail terms well below state sentencing guidelines. Those county sentences included immediate parole, early parole, house arrest, and probation; or the defendants were out on bail because they hadn't been sentenced yet.

The grand result of Krasner's policies -- more armed and dangerous criminals out on the streets, where they can commit more mayhem and murder. As of Nov. 1st, just 16 months after they were originally arrested for gun crimes, a total of 176 defendants out of the original 231, or 76%, were already out of jail, and free to commit more crimes.

And how many of these criminal defendants took advantage of that opportunity? Out of those original 231 defendants from the class of July 2019, court records show, 51 or 22%, of the "graduates" of Krasner's lax prosecution of gun crimes were arrested again and charged with crimes that included gunpoint robberies, armed carjackings, rape, attempted murder, as well as a half-dozen murders.

Big Trial began tracking the gun arrests from July of 2019 back in April, when only 35 out of the original 231 defendants had been rearrested. Now that number is up to 51, and sure to grow. 

In April, the graduates of the D.A.'s lax gun prosecutions had only graduated to commit one murder. Now that number is up to six murders, and it's sure to grow as well. 

With Krasner's turnstile system of justice for prosecuting VUFA crimes, is it any wonder why in Philadelphia:

-- As of Dec. 6th, the number of homicides is at 463, up 40%, when compared to 331 homicides committed at the same time last year.

--  As of Dec. 1st, the number of shooting victims was 2,056, up 53%, from 1,345 shooting victims at this same time last year.

-- As of Dec. 1st, the number of shooting incidents was at 3,571, up 66% from 2,157 shooting incidents at this same time last year.

The simple truth is that the District Attorney's office under Larry Krasner is catering to armed and dangerous criminals, but failing to protect the rest of the citizens. 

The numbers tell the story. And yet, to date, the local media, led by the progressive apologists at The Philadelphia Inquirer, refuse to connect the dots between Krasner's lax prosecution of gun crimes and the rising levels of gun violence in the streets.

Krasner, who's been stonewalling tough questions from Big Trial for the past 16 months, declined to comment on the grim statistics documenting his lax prosecution of gun crimes from July of 2019. Jane Roh, Krasner's alleged spokesperson, as she has done for the past 16 months, also declined comment.

Even when a criminal who commits a gun crime pleads guilty, he typically receives a lenient sentence from Krasner's office. 

According to state sentencing guidelines, the maximum sentence on a VUFA charge that's a first-degree misdemeanor, such as carrying a firearm in public, is up to five years in jail. 

For a third-degree felony, such as carrying a firearm without a license, it's up to seven years in jail.

And for a first-degree felony, which usually involves using a gun in the commission of a shooting, kidnaping, murder, rape or robbery, the maximum penalty is up to 20 years in jail. 

But that's not the kind of sentences that D.A. Krasner advocates, and judges are imposing.

According to court records, 26 of the 45 defendants arrested in July of 2019 who pleaded guilty to VUFA charges got a sentence in a county prison of between 11 1/2 to 23 months in jail. 

Of the 26 who received that sentence, 14 were granted immediate parole; two got house arrest, and one defendant was sentenced to no further penalty. Seven more defendants were put on probation, instead of getting jail time.

Out of the 45 defendants who pleaded guilty to gun crimes, only 5, or 2%, got sentenced to state prison for terms that varied between 2 /1/2 to 5 years in jail to 3 1/2 to 7 years in jail. And those five defendants only got those sentences after they pleaded guilty to first-degree robbery or aggravated assault, offenses that call for up to 20 years in jail, in addition to the VUFA offenses that they were charged with.

Now, let's take a look at the graduating class of July 2019, the 51 defendants arrested for gun crimes who, after they got out of jail, were arrested again and charged with committing more crimes.

Of the 51 graduates:

-- 15 were arrested and charged with allegedly committing more VUFA offenses; three were charged with committing two new alleged VUFA offenses each.

-- three were arrested for allegedly committing gunpoint robberies; one was arrested for allegedly committing an armed carjacking.

-- one was arrested and charged with burglary and strangulation.

-- three were arrested for alleged shootings.

-- two were arrested for rape, including the rape of a child.

-- and a total of five of Krasner's graduates were arrested and charged with committing a total of six murders.

These are the criminals that Larry Krasner turned loose on his fellow citizens, under the guise of criminal justice "reform." Let's meet some of these graduates.

Merv Mitchell,
43, of the Overbrook section of Philadephiawas arrested on July 14, 2019 and charged with possession of a prohibited firearm, a first-degree felony, and carrying an unlicensed firearm, a third-degree felony. As a  felon who committed a burglary in 2013, Mitchell wasn't supposed to be carrying a gun.

A year after his burglary arrest, on July 18, 2014, Mitchell was arrested again after police accused him of trying to chop off another man's hand with a two-foot-long machete. 

According to the police, Mitchell was the Amir at the Masjid mosque located on the 1100 block of North 63rd Street in the Overbrook section of the city. 

The cops claimed that Mitchell tried to inflict Islamic-style justice on a man accused of attempting to steal jars from the mosque loaded with cash donations. Mitchell and the Imam of the mosque allegedly dragged the victim to the rear of the mosque and attempted to cut off his hand with a machete, according to what police told CBS Philly. 

The victim sustained a severe laceration to his right wrist and was transported by medics to Mercy Hospital. Police charged Mitchell, AKA Mabul Shoatz, with aggravated assault, criminal conspiracy, simple assault, and reckless endangerment, among other charges. 

On Sept. 6, 2016, a judge sentenced Mitchell to four to eight years in prison for the 2013 burglary. But Mitchell got a better deal from the D.A.'s office on Feb. 26, 2018, with Larry Krasner in charge, when the D.A. inexplicably decided to drop the charges against Mitchell stemming from the 2014 machete attack. 

After Mitchell's VUFA arrest on July 14, 2019, a a judge filed a detainer, which required Mitchell to be held without bail. According to court records, that detainer did not appear to have been lifted at any point. 

But both the D.A.'s office and the courts failed to ensure that the detainer was in effect if and when Mitchell posted bail. Krasner and his spokesperson, Jane Roh, did not respond to a request for comment. 

So on June 6, 2020, Mitchell posted a 10 percent deposit of $20,000 on $200,000 bail, and got out of jail. His freedom lasted three months. 

On Sept. 21, 2020, police arrested Mitchell for the 11th time and charged him with attempted rape, aggravated indecent assault, simple assault, unlawful restraint, strangulation and indecent assault of a victim less than 13 years old. 

Francisco Ortiz, 30, of the Port Richmond section of Philadelphia, was arrested on July 30, 2019 and charged with illegally carrying an unlicensed firearm, a third-degree felony, and a couple of first-degree misdemeanors, possession of a prohibited firearm, and carrying a firearm in public. 

His bail was set at $100,000, a relatively low amount considering that twice in 2009, Ortiz had pleaded guilty for two different arrests on illegal gun charges, and had served 10 years in prison.

On July 30, 2019, Ortiz's lawyer made a motion to lower his bail to $50,000, and the D.A.'s office went along with it. So on July 30, 2019, after putting up 10 percent, or $5,000, Ortiz walked out of jail and embarked on a bloody spree of drug-related shootings.

On Sept. 18, 2019, police say, Ortiz shot a 22-year-old man to death who was outside his home while his girlfriend and child were inside.

On Oct. 19, 2019, police said, Ortiz opened fire on another man driving through the Hunting Park section of the city. The victim, prosecutors said, was allegedly using his infant son as a human shield, by bringing the child along with him on drug deals.

Ortiz wound up shooting 11-month-old Yazeem Jenkins, who was strapped into a car seat, four times, including once in the head and once in the chest. If the child survived, doctors said, he'll be a quadriplegic.

Less than 24 hours later, according to police, Ortiz supplied an AK-47 assault rifle that was used by two other men in another drug-related shoot-out that resulted in the murder of a two-year-old girl in her mother's living room. The mother, who was holding her baby in her arms, was shot in the head and back.

Ortiz is now being held without bail on dozens of charges that include murder, attempted murder, aggravated assault, reckless endangerment, plus numerous weapons offenses.

Marqis Mathis,
 26, of Philadelphia, was arrested on July 10, 2019 for a gunpoint robbery, a first-degree felony. He had previously been convicted in 2012 in Blair County for two gunpoint robberies.

But on Sept. 16, 2019, the D.A.'s office in Philadelphia decided to drop the charges against Mathis stemming from his most recent gunpoint robbery. A year later, he was listed among the city's most wanted fugitives wanted for murder.

On May 20th, police in Bethlehem pulled over Mathis, 25, in a routine traffic stop, and smelled marijuana in the car. Mathis, who tried to escape on foot, was captured after a brief chase. He gave the Bethlehem cops a phony name, but they figured out who he was.

Mathis was extradited back to Philadelphia, where on Oct. 1st, he was arrested and charged with murder, conspiracy, possession of illegal firearms, carrying firearms in public, possession of an instrument of crime, obstruction, and tampering with physical evidence.

Ishmael Head,
24, of the Kingsessing section of Philadelphia, was arrested on July 25, 2019 and charged with possession of a gun with altered manufacturer's number, a second-degree felony, in addition to charges of manufacturing, delivery or possession with intent to manufacture or deliver, two counts of endangering the welfare of a child, and conspiracy, among other charges.

The same day he was arrested, Head's bail was set at $20,000 monetary, meaning he had to put down a $2,000 deposit to get out of jail.

He didn't have the cash, but it didn't matter. On Sept. 10, 2019, Head's $20,000 monetary bail was changed to $20,000 unsecured bail, meaning he didn't have to post a cent to get out. 

A year later, on Aug. 29th of this year Head was charged with murder, possession of unlicensed firearms, carrying firearms in public, and possession of an instrument of crime. 

Saedair Lindsey, 20, of West Philadelphia, was arrested on July 6, 2019 for burglary, a first-degree felony, and carrying a firearm in public. But on Oct. 24, 2019, the charges inexplicably were withdrawn by the D.A.'s office. 

Krasner and his spokesperson, Jane Roh, did not respond to a request for comment. 

On Sept. 14th, the cops arrested Lindsey again and charged him with two counts each of murder, conspiracy, carrying unlicensed firearms, carrying a firearm in public, and possession of an instrument of crime. 

Three days later, on Sept. 17th, the cops arrested Lindsey again and charged him with two counts each of attempted murder, aggravated assault, carrying unlicensed firearms, carrying a firearm in public, possession of an instrument of crime, simple assault and reckless endangerment. 

Jamir Hughes, 20, of West Philadelphia, was arrested on July 8, 2019 and charged with carrying an unlicensed firearm, a third-degree felony, and a couple of first-degree misdemeanors, possession of prohibited firearms, and carrying a firearm in public. 

But on Oct. 28, 2019, the D.A.'s office dropped the charges for  lack of evidence.

The charges were refiled and the case was held for court on Jan. 28th. On March 4th, Hughes entered an open guilty plea to three charges, but has not been sentenced yet.

He pleaded guilty on April 22, 2019 in Delaware County to burglary and conspiracy for a sentence of 11 1/2 to 23 months, plus five years probation.

The capper: Hughes was one of three suspects charged with the Christmas Eve murder last year of a 20-year-old man in Upper Darby. Police said it was a robbery gone bad. And after Hughes and the other suspects murdered the victim, they set a stolen car on fire that they used in a getaway. 

The 18 charges against Hughes include criminal homicide, first-degree murder, second degree murder, robbery, conspiracy, and reckless burning. 

                            *                           *                              *                     *

There's one final postscript regarding the D.A's woeful record in prosecuting gun crime cases from July of 2019. Of all those cases involving 231 defendants, to date, only five cases ever made it to trial. 

Four of those cases were prosecuted in court by the District Attorney's office, under Larry Krasner, and the D.A.'s record in those cases was 0 for 4. Yep, that's right. The D.A.'s office under Larry Krasner lost all four cases. 

The only conviction in a Philadelphia a gun crime case that originated from a July 2019 arrest was achieved by the feds. It happened in a trial on Oct. 23rd, when the U.S. Attorney's office took over the prosecution of Peter Hutton, 24, of West Philadelphia.

The cops arrested Hutton on July 5, 2019, after they received a 911 call about a man with a gun seen on Locust Avenue in the Germantown section of Philadelphia. When the cops arrived, Hutton was getting into his car and reaching into his waistband for a Glock 9 mm semi-automatic pistol loaded with 12 live rounds of ammunition, a gun he subsequently tossed into the back seat of his car.

Hutton was charged with possession of an unlicensed firearm, and carrying firearms in public. On Aug. 30, 2019, the Philadelphia District Attorney's office, however, decided to drop the charges against Hutton.

Then, the feds re-arrested Hutton on Sept. 30th. A spokesperson for the U.S. Attorney's office said they could not comment on whether the feds had asked the D.A.'s office to take over the case, and that's why the D.A. dropped the charges. Or whether the feds arrested Hutton because the D.A. dropped the charges.

Krasner and his spokesperson, Jane Roh, as usual, did not respond to a request for comment. 

Whatever way it came about, the feds tried Hutton, and actually got a conviction. 

The crime of being a felon in possession of a firearm is a serious offense, particularly in a city like Philadelphia, where the problem of gun violence continues to grow every day,” said U.S. Attorney William McSwain. 

 “There is a reason convicted felons like Hutton no longer have the right to possess a potentially lethal weapon. The answer to Philadelphia’s violent crime crisis is to get criminals like Hutton off the streets," McSwain said.

What a refreshing viewpoint.

If only the feds were in charge of prosecuting all gun crimes in Philadelphia. The citizens would be a lot safer than they are under the so-called progressive policies of District Attorney Larry Krasner, policies that will only lead to more shootings, and more murders. 


  1. The homicide rate is inching toward 500 for 2020 (the worst year ever for murder) and the local media is amazingly silent.

    Here's another topic for an article: the PPD's murder clearance rate. As you mentioned in your article above, some of those 'graduates' were rearrested for murder, but it seems the murder clearance rate is around 30%, so it's fair to assume some graduates (and a whole lot of other people) are getting away with murder.

    I love this City, but we have some of the worst leaders and media in the country.

  2. The documented leniency shown by Krasner's office towards these career criminals as well as his antagonistic attitude toward the Police Department isn't boding well for the City. I don't think that much proactive police work is happening, and the repeat offenders are aware of this. There is little chance that they will be arrested for carrying a gun, and even slimmer chance that they'll be prosecuted.

  3. My Suggestion to Ring in the New Year, now that the Cancel Culture Mayor, has banned the Mummers Parade.

    Wenches, Minstrels, and Patriots should wear Greenface and let the Bastards Know what We Really Think of Them.

    Organize Protests in front of Kenney, Krasner, and Outlaw's Residences, starting with the Wench that Kenney shacks up with, who lives across from Marconi Plaza and March On.

    1. The 2021 Mummer's Parade was not canceled because of its sometimes politically incorrect content.

      The Mummer's Parade and all big Philly events on public property were canceled back in July because of the pandemic.

      The Mummers could hold their event on private property if they can abide by public health protocols. Channel 17 promised to broadcast old highlights and some new Mummer content on Jan. 1, 2021.

  4. Let's see just how effective the "feds" are when Joe Biden is in charge. He might need to ask his supervisor in Beijing first if its OK for his justice department to continue to prosecute these cases. Oh what the hell who are we kidding... he'll let Larry Krasner do as he pleases and call it "great progress". More murder more shootings, how progressive and woke!

  5. The Soros Inspired and Funded Open Society Foundation has Celebrated on Monday with the Inauguration of DA Kahn in LA.

    The Spread of the Chinese Virus is ravaging California as the Scourge of allowing Tyrannical Politicians Rule and commit Social and Political Mayhem which mirrors the Pattern and Path of the Plague.

    The Citizens of LA and Other Major Jurisdictions who are conned into Electing Radical and Subversive Lawyers to serve as Prosecutors should be educated and counseled by the Facts and Statistics that have emerged from the Failed Krasner Debacle.

    Yet again, Scientific Evidence and Data proves that just as Scum Rises to the Top of the Swamp, so do Subversive Lawyers and Judges.

    If the SCOTUS continues along its Present Path and refuses to Hear Cases of Fraud and Criminal Misconduct that are being presented, Trump will take the Call of General Flynn and Suspend the Constitution and ask Patriots to Defend the Constitution while declaring Martial Law and Enforce a New and Fair Election without Mail-In Ballot Fraud and be Monitored by Honest Boards of Elections.

    What a Unique Experience that Will Be!!!!

    Jason Brando

  6. The government you elect is the government you deserve.


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