Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Kenney & Outlaw Clueless, D.A. AWOL As Philly Tops 400 Murders

By Ralph Cipriano
for BigTrial.net

As the city surpassed the grim milestone of more than 400 murders, Mayor Jim Kenney was dour, petulant and on the defensive. 

At a virtual press conference, Kenney served up plenty of excuses as to why his administration remains clueless about how to stop the bloodshed. 

Meanwhile, Danielle Outlaw, Kenney's handpicked police commissioner, tried to put an optimistic spin on the record body count, but her top brass wasn't buying it, and neither should you.

At the virtual press conference, Outlaw also publicly lamented the "different priorities" of her "partner in law enforcement," D.A. Larry Krasner, like he was an unfaithful boyfriend.

And where was Krasner? The man most responsible for the carnage in Philadelphia was out holding his own press conference, and dispensing his own brand of Kool-Aid. According to Krasner, "We do not have a spike in violent crime." The D.A. would also have you believe that he's tirelessly working behind the scenes with his own partners in law enforcement to stop the violence. But the facts show that what Krasner's really up to is doing more favors for career criminals.

As the city remains in crisis, the dysfunction of its leadership was on full display last week. And so was the malpractice of our docile local media. As the bodies piled up, the city's reporters repeatedly failed to do their job by holding Kenney, Outlaw and Krasner accountable for the bloodshed.

As far as Kenney was concerned, surpassing 400 murders was a "tragic milestone" that left him "heartbroken"and "outraged." Hizzoner even confessed that the night the city hit 400, it cost him a good night's sleep.

"We're taking this crisis very seriously," the mayor assured reporters at the virtual press conference convened last Thursday. "We're acting with urgency to reduce violence through many means."

Next, the mayor had one of his aides talk about pork barrel legislation. The city is passing out grants starting at $10,000 and going all the way to up to $1 million, to create more social programs that are supposed to function as "interrupters to the cycle of violence," whatever that means.

While the aide was talking, the city displayed pictures of kids planting flowers, as if that was going to stop anybody from pulling the trigger.

Kenney blamed the murder rate on the easy availability of guns, and he pointed the finger of blame at gun manufacturers and dealers.

"It's frustrating, it's disgusting that some people are making a lot of money off this carnage," he said.

When a reporter asked Kenney what he would say to the grieving grandmother of a 24-year old murder victim who was the mother of two young children, Kenney snapped, "That question is insensitive because I care about all of these [victims]. They are all human beings and one [murder] is too many."

Kenney cut off another questioner who tried to ask in a polite way whether Kenney and Outlaw were the right people to turn this situation around.

The glaringly self-evident answer is no, but the mayor chose to change the subject. He just got through watching CNN, he told the reporter. And "Homicides are up nationally 33% so this is not just a Philadelphia-only problem."

Nice dodge, Mr. Mayor.

A retired senior police commander with decades of experience who watched the Kenney & Outlaw show gave it a bad review.

"All you hear is one excuse after another," said the retired commander who sought anonymity. "You see his [Kenney's] smirk and see how defensive he gets whenever there's a question asked about him not being responsible. Everything gets deflected."

The commander recalled that both former Mayor Michael Nutter and former Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey had a publicly stated goal, often repeated at press conferences, of keeping the murder rate at 200 bodies. 

With Kenney and Outlaw in charge, we'll soon be topping 500.

"Kenney's a complete failure," the retired police commander said. "Here is an individual who will not take responsibility or ownership of the problem. The availability of guns is a false narrative. Someone's pulling the trigger. There's pure evil out there."

The retired police commander said he had nothing but admiration for the "men and women of the PPD who continue to do their dangerous jobs" in the face of constant criticism, public vilification, and second-guessing and outright back-stabbing from the deadly trio of Kenney, Krasner and Outlaw.

When it was Outlaw's turn at the mike, she decried the "unconscionable" increase in gun violence. 

But then she tried to put a Pollyanna-ish spin on the situation, by talking about the "steady decrease in the number of shootings, both fatal and nonfatal shootings in the past several months."

Really, Commish?

The city's murder rate currently stands at 420, an 18% increase over last year. At this rate, the city will set an all-time record of 588 murders. The old record, set back in 1990, at the height of the crack cocaine epidemic, was 500.

When Kenney and Outlaw gave their virtual press conference, it was on the last day of September, a month when the city racked up 55 murders. In the last 31 years, that's the third highest total in the city's history.

According to the police department's statistical department, the most violent month in the city's history  was last October, with 66 murders. Prior to that, in June of 1990, the city had 56 murders.

At the virtual press conference, Outlaw also tried to talk up the department's "Operation Pinpoint" program which targets the most violent offenders and the most crime-stricken areas. According to stats cited by Deputy Police Commissioner Ben Naish, shootings are up 11% city wide, but in Operation Pinpoint areas, the shooting rate is down 14%.

The retired police commander was unimpressed.

"You're responsible for the entire city, not just [the areas affected by] Operation Pinpoint," he said.

Outlaw, the retired police commander said, actually tried to peddle this silver lining talk earlier in the week to her police captains. She expressed happiness about what she perceived as a slight dip in crime. But, the retired police commander said, "They [the captains] couldn't believe that she uttered such nonsense."

"Yes, she also said we are all doing a good job," one commander recounted. "She also said we are making progress for the mayor's Philadelphia Roadmap to Safer Communities. She was dead serious. We were all blown away."

"We were wondering how she said that with a straight face," the same police commander said. "She really lives in a little girl's fantasy world. She is truly demented. How can she believe what she says? She was showing us these meaningless statistics, showing how for a week or two, compared to this time last year, there was a slight reduction in shootings."

During the murder rampage, Deputy Police Commissioner Naish reported, police are taking guns off the street at a record pace. Last year, the cops recovered 4,989 guns used to commit crimes, a 17% increase. But this year, the police to date have recovered 4,475 guns used to commit crime. 

If that rate keeps up, it will amount to a total of 6,050 guns recovered by this year's end, a 21% increase.

"That's an insane amount of guns that are on the streets of Philadelphia," Naish said. Many of the criminals caught committing gun crimes are repeat offenders.

As Outlaw said at the press conference, "It's a small amount of people that's driving a large percentage of the crime." 

She praised the FBI because the agency "chose to be in alignment with us" when it comes to investigating and prosecuting drug and gun crimes.

But as for Krasner, Outlaw said, "It's been made very clear that fundamentally in the D.A.'s office that possession with intent to distribute [as well as possession of] illegal crime guns, may not be a priority."


"And I don’t know what can be done to get everyone on the same page," Outlaw said.


During the press conference, Naish used 11 recent murder cases to explain what's been going on out on the streets.

Three of those cases, however, highlighted what's gone wrong with Philadelphia's criminal justice system, namely by showcasing three perps who had no business being out on the streets.

But thanks to the criminal justice "reforms" of Larry Krasner, that's just where they wound up, free to commit more crimes.

Take Tyree Carthwright, 43, of the Tacony section of the city, who's just been arrested in connection with a double homicide. On July 1st, the cops got a call to investigate a car in Frankford that had a strong odor emanating from it. 

Inside, the cops found two large trash bags containing the remains of a 26 year-old black man and a 30 year-old black man, both of whom had been shot to death.

On Aug. 15th, Carthwright was arrested on an unrelated domestic incident and the cops recovered a 9 mm handgun that matched the ballistics of the bullets that killed the two murder victims. 

Unfortunately, Cartwright had already posted bail and was released on Aug. 19th.

Four days later, warrants were issued for Cartwright on charges of two counts of murder, conspiracy, and gun charges. But unfortunately, Cartwright was no longer around.

"Mr. Cartwright remains a fugitive at this time," Naish said.

How he was out on the streets is a mystery that can only be explained by the D.A.'s office. But they're not talking.

On Aug. 15th, Cartwright was charged in connection with violating a stay away order with aggravated assault, three gun charges, terroristic threats, simple assault, reckless endangerment, and resisting arrest. 

Cartwright was a career criminal, dating back to his youth. In 1994, the year he turned 16, Cartwright was twice found to be an adjudicated delinquent, the equivalent of a guilty plea; the first time for carrying firearms in public, the second time for robbery. 

 In 1996, when he turned 18, Cartwright pleaded guilty to robbery and carjacking, carrying firearms in public, and conspiracy, and he received a 5 to 10 year sentence.

In 2003, he pleaded guilty to drug charges and conspiracy, and was sentenced to another 5 to 10 years in prison.

In 2017, the D.A.'s office dropped charges against Cartwright for a 2014 arrest that included attempted murder, aggravated assault,  and gun charges.

In 2019, the D.A.'s office dropped three new gun charges against Cartwright stemming from a 2017 arrest.

In 2020, the D.A.'s office dismissed three more gun charges against Cartwright.

For his most recent arrest involving domestic violence, Cartwright's bail was set at $40,000 monetary, meaning he had to post 10%, or only $4,000 to go free. 

"This is a very violent guy," a veteran prosecutor said. "His bail at a minimum should have been $100,000." And when bail was set at $40,000, the D.A.'s office should have filed an appeal, the former prosecutor said.

Instead, the D.A.'s office did nothing to protect the public. 

Next up was in the parade of bad guys detailed by deputy police commissioner Naish was Freimy Rivera, 20, of Northeast Philadelphia. He was arrested Sept 20th on murder charges in connection with the May 24th shooting death of a 28 year-old man in the 300 block of East Indiana Street. 

Rivera was another guy with a long rap sheet featuring nine arrests for multiple felonies since May of 2019, including drug dealing, burglary, and a stolen car. Those arrests included five open cases, but Rivera was still out on the street, with the D.A.'s office being unable to prosecute him on a second case. 

Most recently, he was charged on Sept. 21st with murder, conspiracy, gun charges, and reckless endangerment.

Before that, Rivera had enjoyed a string of three court appearances where the D.A.'s office withdrew a total of a dozen charges against him, including theft from a car, burglary, and assault.

Finally, on the Police Department's list of bad guys was Nathan Carbonell, 20, of North Philadelphia. He was arrested on Sept. 22nd, and charged with fatally shooting a 47 year old woman in head; a crime that took place on the 1800 block of East Tusculum Street.

Carbonell was charged with murder, conspiracy, gun charges, and reckless endangerment.

Court records show that the D.A.'s office had a few earlier chances to keep Carbonell behind bars.

But on May 6th, the D.A.'s office dismissed charges against Carbonell for aggravated assault, simple assault and resisting arrest.

On Aug. 31, the D.A.'s office withdrew charges against Carbonell in another case for drugs, gun charges and conspiracy.

Prior to that, Carbonell was arrested on July 2nd on two more gun charges.

In 2019, the D.A.'s office withdrew charges against Carbonell for drugs and conspiracy.

Meanwhile, when the city went over 400 murders, Krasner held his own press conference on Monday, Sept. 27th, where the resourceful D.A. sought to make the pitch that crime was actually going down in Philadelphia.


"We do not have a spike in crime; crime is actually down," the D.A. said.

 

"We do not have a spike in violent crime; violent crime is actually down as well," he said. But it's just this "terrible spike in gun violence [that] has us so rightly concerned."


Krasner then introduced Assistant District Attorney Carolyn Jamieson of the major trials unit to explain what Krasner stressed was a couple of success stories for the D.A.'s office, a couple of successful prosecutions done by a couple of his "very, very capable prosecutors."


 Jamieson, who got her law license in 2019, then explained how Yuseph Cross, 38, of Center City, was found guilty in a waiver [non-jury] trial of impersonating a police officer, and robbing and stabbing a man.


According to Jamieson, last October, Cross knocked on the car window of two men who were asleep inside and pretended to be a police officer. He took a bag from one of the men, who tried to reclaim it. During a struggle, while another defendant held one of the victims down, Cross stabbed the man in the abdomen, Jamieson said.


The veteran prosecutor was amazed that Krasner would call attention to such a case, which he said was so routine that cases like it are disposed of every day at the Criminal Justice Center. 


"To highlight a case like that was ridiculous," the veteran prosecutor said. Krasner's office is so inept and prosecutes so few cases successfully, the veteran prosecutor said, that they had to highlight a case "that should rightly disappear into the dustbin of history."


The veteran prosecutor was also surprised that ADA Jamieson was in the major trials unit in only her second year as a prosecutor. For decades prior to Krasner's reign, every rookie prosecutor who joined the D.A.'s office began their careers by prosecuting trials in Municipal Court before graduating to handling cases in Juvenile Court.


But Krasner's office is so depleted that he's got veritable rookies like ADA Jamieson working in the major trials unit.

Secondly, the veteran prosecutor was amused that Krasner was presenting as a success the case involving Cross that's "proof of failure."

Like the trio of suspects that were discussed at the mayor's press conference, Cross is a career criminal who was on probation with a rap sheet featuring more than a dozen arrests.

Instead of being out on the street, Cross should have been behind bars.

On Oct. 17th, Cross was found guilty of robbery, assault, conspiracy, aggravated assault, gun charges, and impersonating a public servant. 

Previously, he was charged with sexual assault but pleaded guilty in 2013 to indecent assault on a minor, corruption of a minor, and was sentenced to 11 1/2 to 23 months in jail, and five years probation.

In 2018, the D.A.'s office dismissed charges against Cross of failure to comply with registration as a sexual offender, failure to verify his address and failure to be photographed as required, in addition to failure to provide accurate information to authorities. He was also found guilty twice in 2019 of contempt of court. 

But in 2019, the D.A.'s office dismissed a drug charge against Cross. Later that same year, the D.A.'s office dismissed charges against Cross for theft and receiving stolen property.

On Feb. 28, 2020, the D.A.'s office withdrew charges against Cross that included theft and receiving stolen property, in exchange for a guilty plea on disorderly conduct. On that same day, Cross pleaded guilty in a negotiated plea to theft and receiving stolen property. He got probation for a maximum of nine months.

But according to court records, although Cross was still on probation for indecent assault, the D.A.'s office failed to revoke his probation on any of the new arrests or convictions. 

In the light of giving numerous passes to career criminals such as Cross, it was hard to take Krasner seriously when he closed out his press conference by telling people, "We care; we care deeply and we are here to protect you."

But thanks to the media, and the silent complicity of Kenney and Outlaw, the D.A. continues to get away with lying to the public, while he's letting one armed and dangerous criminal after another back out on the streets.

With this crew in charge, the shootings and the murders will continue unabated.

Hey Larry, Jim and Danielle, see you at the next press conference when the city tops 500 murders.

22 comments

  1. Cant belive what I just read wait I can believe it because u have leaders with no backbone and no leadership and if wasn't for outside liberal money these people would not be In office stop worrying about plastic bags and get these scumbags off the streets and behind bars were they belong

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    1. It's time for the FOP and The National FOP to take on this Corrupt Administration and file Criminal charges . WE NEED A FEDERAL GRAND JURY !!!!

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  2. Great piece! Great, great journalism from Philadelphia's finest journalistic gem, Ralph Cipriano. I've purchased and read all of your books and feel guilty reading this fine submission without any contribution. I'd love to donate to you, or any cause you'd deem worthy. Thank you, Ralph.

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    1. Big Trial lost its funding in 2016. One of its two reporters left shortly thereafter. I've considered shutting this blog down every year since, but it serves a function. Nobody else is holding the DA, mayor and police commissioner accountable.

      Don't know how long this can continue, however. I do wish we had funding and more staff. Would love to cover the Johnny Doc trial and provide a much needed alternative to the Inquirer's pro-prosecution coverage.

      If you're wondering about how fair the Inky is when it's covering a major trial, read my book on Vince Fumo.

      Delete
    2. The Inquirer is a weapon, funded by billionaires to serve oligarchs.
      We are experiencing a class war, but since the billionaires own and control everything, it is being presentedas a race war.
      Billionaires will not allow this to be a class issue, until they are done hiding all their money in fake charities, and putting their kids in charge of them, like The Fake Clinton Foudation or the Fake Lenfest Institute for Journalism, or whatever horror Bloomberg is cooking up.
      If they had to pay taxes, they'd lose control, so fake charities it is, with media like the Inquirer sanctifying them. This is how they run game.

      Delete
    3. C' Mpn Man...You know the Drill...find a Whistleblower...

      Are these Criminal Politicians that well insulated and supported by Their Administrations that No One is disgruntled and wants to change things from the way that they are run.

      Kenney, Krasner, Outlaw have pushed a directive that PPD must stand down to acts of violence committed upon them and in full view of Police and the World.

      What is the date of that Directive and who is the Chief Inspector of Center City who allowed Active Duty Patrol Officers to be humiliated and no repercussions were taken by the Police.

      That should be the Message sent by Peruto and will Help Your Brand and Perhaps Get a New DA.

      Jason Brando

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    4. Set up bitcoin and bitcoin cash donations and we'll chip in. The hardcore liberals are failing badly, whether its our pathetic "no questions" president mr. joe headroom biden, governor tom "kill the elderly" wolf, or local losers like kenney who needs a fresh batch of excuses each week. Someone needs to speak the truth about these freaks. The mainstream US "news media" is owned by the same people who own the freaks.

      Delete
  3. Never had the makings of a Varsity Mayor!

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    1. In fairness to The Jim Kenney, he never really like thought he like would be like faced with these issues.
      He thought he'd like become mayor, through machine attrition, and like cruise through his two terms, hanging with the Meek Mills and the Beyonce.
      The Jim Kenney never thought he'd have to deal with any of these issues.
      His strategy, like the White House, in dealing with gentle questions from accommodating reporters is to display outrage and turn the question around, for example:
      "When a reporter asked Kenney what he would say to the grieving grandmother of a 24-year old murder victim who was the mother of two young children, Kenney snapped, "That question is insensitive because I care about all of these [victims]. They are all human beings and one [murder] is too many."'

      Kenney flips the script. "I care about all these (victims)."
      Really? Name them. All 500.

      Delete
    2. The Jim Kenney only ever really cared about making vast riches from his public $ervice.
      See below an clip from Billy Penn, by a once promising reporter who sold out to the Gerry Lenfest Institute for Journalism and Child Sex Abuse Cover Up-funded Annenberg diabolical legacy-ridden Philadelphia Inquirer:

      Including his City Council salary, Jim Kenney brought in nearly $350,000 last year. On top of his job as an at-large councilman, he worked as a consultant at Vitetta Architects and Engineers, served on the Amerihealth/ Independence Blue Cross board, was an adjunct professor at Penn and brought in hefty pensions from both the city and the state.

      ADVERTISEMENT

      We know how much Kenney made last year thanks to the mayoral financial disclosure being more detailed than what’s required by City Council. In this form, Kenney was required to disclose how much he made at each of his other gigs in 2015. Here’s what it showed he made:

      Vitetta Architects and Engineers: $69,004.52
      Amerihealth/ IBC: $43,200.00
      University of Pennsylvania: $1,312.50
      City Council: $10,833.01
      City of Philadelphia retirement: $83,607.51
      State retirement: $9,327.12

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    3. Funny. The Annenbergs. I read that the paper improved after they sold to John Knight. From Slate:
      “Annenberg became an oddity in Philadelphia,” Cooney writes. “His name was associated with numerous good works, and he was often the first prominent citizen anyone seeking charitable donations approached, but the whimsical use of his paper on occasion to punish those who offended him made many people uneasy.” The kindest thing he ever did for Philadelphia was to sell the Inquirer to John Knight, who turned it into a real newspaper."
      We need more John Knights and fewer Gerry Lenfests and Walter Annenbergs. G-d help us all.

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    4. Bahahahahahahaha!!!!!! Some People Are So Far Behind In A Race That They Actually Believe They’re Leading...

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  4. At this point, screw them all! Let's hit 600. If we're going to break a record, let's do it big! The sad truth is that nothing meaningful will happen until it hits close to home for these people supposedly in charge. Ralph, remind everyone of how good, ol' Larry behaved when his own home was burglarized several years back, how he wanted the book thrown at the offenders.
    The truth is that the only people assured of being prosecuted are police officers. Everyone else gets a free ride thanks to "restorative justice" until it's too late and the most heinous crimes have occurred. The Three Stooges have a place in hell when they're through 26th this Mittal coil.

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  5. Where is Josh Shapiro on all of this? I know he has a nard on for the Mariner Pipeline - but we're talking 400+ murders in Phila and who knows how many more across the state. Why do these DAs hunt birds instead of bagging big game?

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    1. Like Kenney, Shapiro only takes on cases that enhance is social media profile and voracious hunger for power.
      Bashing Catholics is an easy, proven, relatively risk-free path to accomplish this.
      For example:
      Kenney pushed to impose his will on the Catholics and their Church, via Catholic Social Services in Kenney's demand that the foster agency contractually accept same sex marriage. While CCS does place kids with LGBTQ+ community members, it will not accept same sex marriage, Kenney tries to impose on them. CCS took it to SCOTUS, and all judges, every last one, sided with the Catholics and their Church. Every last one. SCOTUS said it was not that the Catholics wanted to impose their beliefs on the city, but the city and the Kenney Administration wanted to impose their beliefs on the Church.
      As a Jew, I take great umbrage with this. And we all should, We have politicians targeting religious organizations. Terrifying. Not that the Inquirer sees it this way. They nary reported on in.
      Kenney, once again, got kicked in the butt, like when he tried to get Penn to contribute to PILOT. Penn, Amy Guttman, David Cohen kicked him to the curb. Showed him the door. Penn wants value for its money, and giving the city money is like throwing it down a hole.

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  6. Plus, those who Kenney makes rich, who dont live in the city or pay taxes here, but make bank from abatements and corporate welfare, are out of harm's way. Also, Kenney and council, Police Chief Kiss Curl, and Let'em Loose Larry, all enjoy round the clock po-po protection, so what do they care.

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  7. Ralph, Good piece. Please continue to hold Philly's leadership accountable.

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  8. FECKLESS.....
    worthless, irresponsible a feckless maneuver that could only serve to strengthen the enemy— Simon Schama.

    Do we have any nominations for the first annual "Feckless City Official" in the City of Philadelphia in 2021?

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    Replies
    1. It would be a three-way tie.

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    2. When You were in Command of a District did You receive a directive for Officers to stand down while witness to a criminal act?

      If so ordered and obeyed why does not the Chief in Command not face criminal charges?

      Delete
  9. Kenny looks bored.
    Dead blacks are harshing his buzz.
    He'll have to spend his remaining term in duck and cover mode, resurfacing only to call everyone racist or dedicating a statue to community of color.

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  10. And he will still collect a paycheck

    ReplyDelete

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