Thursday, December 10, 2020

U.S. Attorney Blasts D.A. As Responsible For Hero Cop's Murder

By Ralph Cipriano

In a hard-hitting 20-minute press conference this afternoon, U.S. Attorney William McSwain hammered District Attorney Larry Krasner for his "pro-violent defendant policies," which McSwain said were as responsible for the murder of hero cop James O'Connor, as the drug dealer who fired the fatal shot.

With O'Connor's widow, Terri, and police officer son James Jr. standing by his side, McSwain announced a seven-count federal indictment that charged four gang members with murder, conspiracy, and drug dealing. McSwain also announced that according to his office's special findings, Hassan Elliott, O'Connor's killer, was now eligible for the death penalty, something that pro-criminal Larry Krasner would never seek.

McSwain then issued an extraordinary denunciation of the D.A., and called on him to voluntarily step aside, drop his "investigation" of O'Connor's murder, and let the feds take over the case.

 "Hassan Elliott never should have been on the street in the first place," McSwain said. "He should have been in jail. The only reason he was out of jail was because of the pro-violent defendant polices of the Philadelphia District Attorney, Larry Krasner."

"These policies prioritize decarcration of violent offenders over public safety," McSwain said. "Krasner's policies coddle and embolden violent criminals. They create a culture of lawlessness and they have inevitable consequences, one of which is a murder rate in Philadelphia that is the highest it has been in several decades."

And "in 2020," McSwain said, "we have already more shootings in Philadelphia [than] in any other year ever."

McSwain proceeded to blast Krasner's pro-violent criminal policies as "every bit as responsible" for the murder of Corporal O'Connor as his alleged killers.

"Sgt. O'Connor's murder was entirely preventable," McSwain said about the fallen officer who was posthumously promoted to sergeant. McSwain added that Krasner's polices  "prioritize decarceration of violent offenders over public safety."

It's a point Big Trial has been making with a recent analysis of court records that show that out of the defendants arrested for alleged gun crimes in just one month, July of 2019, 176 out of 231, or 76%, were back on the streets 16 months later. And 51 of those defendants, or 22%, went on to commit more alleged crimes that included gunpoint robberies, armed carjackings, rape, attempted murder, as well as a half-dozen murders. 

"Many of these shootings and murders were possible only because of the district attorney's willingness, indeed his eagerness, to return violent offenders to the streets where they can continue to threaten, assault, shoot and kill," McSwain said. 

"In order to address this epidemic of violence in our city we must have the courage to tell the truth," he told the assembled reporters, none of whom to date have had the courage to print the truth of what McSwain was about to say next.

"The truth is, as a practical matter, Krasner's pro-violent defendant polices are what put Elliott on the street. They put this horrible chain of events in motion, and in that sense, these policies are every bit as responsible for Sgt. O'Connor's alleged murder as the defendants," McSwain said.

"Given these facts it would be absurd, even grotesque, to leave it up to Krasner to direct the prosecution of Sgt. O'Connor's alleged killers," McSwain said. "And it would be cruel to ask Sgt. O'Connor's family to simply cross their fingers and hope that Krasner's pro-defendant agenda does not victimize them yet again." 

"That absurdity ends today," McSwain declared, with the feds taking over the case. He praised O'Connor, the son of a police officer, as a hero who exemplified "honor integrity and bravery," a cop who "literally gave his life to protect the community."

When it was her turn to speak, Terri O'Connor, a former police dispatcher, also blasted Krasner

"It's pretty clear these criminals were out on the streets because of our district attorney, Larry Krasner," she said. "His slap on the wrist penalties have caused me a lifetime of sorrow. These males should have never been out of jail."

Then, O'Connor's widow called on Krasner to step aside.

"It's time for him to be done and fully release this job to the feds," she said about the D.A. "I don't need to be the next Maureen Faulkner and have 40 years of fighting ahead of me. I don't need anyone to be given a plea deal behind my back."

Maureen Faulkner, the widow of murdered Police Officer Danny Faulkner, has been fighting to keep her husband's convicted killer, Mumia Abu-Jamal, in jail for the past 40 years. Krasner has been behind the latest appeal effort to free Mumia. 

Terri O'Connor talked about the four drug dealing members who were holed up with nine guns in an apartment in the Frankford section of the city on Friday March 13th, day her husband showed up with a SWAT team to serve Elliott with an arrest warrant for murder.

"My husband gave his life so these four violent criminals could be taken off the streets of Philadelphia," she said. "His death should give others peace knowing they will never encounter these individuals for the rest of their life."

According to court records, Hassan Elliott got one break after another from the D.A.'s office, as well as city judges. 

On Jan. 24, 2018 in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court, before Judge Robert Coleman, Hassan Elliott pleaded guilty in a negotiated plea to carrying firearms without a license. He got 9 to 23 months in prison and three years probation. But he walked out of court a free man that day because the judge accepted as his prison term the amount of jail time previously served.

As part of the deal the D.A. agreed to drop two other charges, intentional possession of a controlled substance, and a charge of carrying firearms in public.

While on probation, three different times, Elliott was brought before the judge on alleged violations of parole. And three times, rather than put him in jail, the district attorney's office allowed Elliott to continue being on probation.

On Jan 29, 2019, Elliott was arrested again, this time for a direct violation of his probation, namely an arrest on a charge of possession of a controlled substance.

On March 27, 2019, Elliott's case was in court again. But Assistant District Attorney Donald Burns Jr., who had only been hired a month before, told the judge that the district attorney's office was withdrawing the drug charge against Elliott.

Ironically, in March of 2019, the same month the D.A.'s office gave Elliott a pass on the drug charge that would have surely put him back in jail, it was the same month that Elliott allegedly committed a robbery and a murder. These were the charges that Corporal O'Connor and the SWAT team showed up on March 13th in Frankford to arrest him for.

At the press conference, FOP President John McNesby also spoke in favor of having the feds take over the case, "to make sure that these folks get exactly what they deserve."

The O'Connor family needs some peace, McNesby said. The O'Connor family needs to be assured that there would be "no secret deals or sweetheart deals cut behind closed doors." And that's only possible fi the feds take over the case, and Krasner is no longer in charge of prosecuting O'Connor's killers.

If the feds take over, McNesby said, "there's a fair chance that these folks will get the death penalty."

In response to questions from reporters, McSwain said that the special findings regarding Hassan Elliott "makes him eligible for the death penalty."

But, McSwain cautioned, "its a long, complicated process" that will need the approval of the U.S. Attorney General, and then a jury may get to decide whether Elliott would be put to death.

McSwain was asked if the D.A. to date had decided to voluntarily withdraw from the case.

"That's a question for Mr. Krasner to answer, whether prosecution will be withdrawn," he said. As far as the D.A. standing down, "That's normally what happens" when the feds adopt a case, "the locals drop their case," McSwain said.

But clearly, that's not what's happened to date.

"It's theoretically possible to have two cases going on at the same time," McSwain admitted. "It's not efficient. It's not what the family wants," he said.

Terri O'Connor, McSwain said, "doesn't want to deal with the district attorney's office any more."

But apparently, the next move is up to Krasner. 

If he had any decency, he would step aside. But Krasner is a hardened left-wing ideologue who wants to free celebrity cop killer Mumia Abu-Jamal, so there's no telling what he will do.

A final anomaly about the press conference was that Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw wasn't there. The optics were a bit awkward. As head of the department, at a press conference where the U.S. Attorney was announcing he was taking over the prosecution of the murder of one of her officers, she should have been there.

But Outlaw, known among the ranks as "MIA," as in Missing In Action, has shown herself to be a low-profile police commissioner. She has also embarked on a recent "collaboration" with Krasner that many of her troops believe is ill-advised. So perhaps Outlaw didn't want to offend Krasner by standing at McSwain's side while the U.S. Attorney was taking the D.A. to the woodshed. 

So in Outlaw's place, she sent First Deputy Melvin Singleton. He briefly paid tribute to the O'Connor family's "strength and courage over the last few months," which he said has been "truly inspirational."

"We are here for you," Singleton told the O'Connor family. He added that O'Connor "would always be a hero in every true sense of the word."


  1. Neither Singleton or Outlaw showed up to the hearing. They got called out about it then all of a sudden the next day they showed. Simpleton, I mean Singleton was more worried if cops were wearing masks at the hearing. What a disgrace she wasn't there! Both have zero leadership skills.

  2. We just had an African American man ex In executed last night in Federal prison. When Biden takes over, he will request the resignation of all Republicans who are US Attorneys and replace them with Democrats. This, Mc Swain will be forced to resign and the Democrat US Attorney will pass over the cop killer case back to Krasner.


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