Saturday, May 15, 2021

The Black D.A. And The White D.A.

By Ralph Cipriano

During his last six months in office, as he ran the gauntlet of ethics officials, prosecutors and the media, former District Attorney Seth Williams got nailed at every turn.

So when Williams watches his successor in action, he could be forgiven if he feels a pang of envy.

After all, Williams went to jail for accepting as gifts -- the feds called them bribes -- occasional free flights to sunny locales, where he was also treated to free meals and hotel stays. But when District Attorney Larry Krasner took office, he made Williams look like a piker.

During his first 28 months in office, Krasner went on a globe-trotting, barnstorming all-expenses paid junket to 47 cities across the nation, as well as Vancouver, Berlin and Portugal. While the known tab ran over $100,000, taxpayers picked up 85% of the cost. And Krasner's campaign contributors such as the Real Justice PAC of San Francisco, paid for the rest of the cost.

Ok, so one D.A. sold himself cheap, while the other D.A. obviously knows how to play the game so that a dollar never leaves his bulging wallet. 

But Krasner's also a tax deadbeat -- he owes $53,966 in taxes this year on a building he owns at 1221 Locust -- and he's brazenly breaking the city's campaign finance laws.

On Radio, Big Trial Analyzes Vega Vs. Krasner

Big Trial was on the Morning Answer on 990 AM yesterday with guest-host Christine Flowers to discuss Carlos Vega's chances of upsetting D.A. Larry Krasner at Tuesday's Democratic primary.

On the podcast, the conversation starts at 1:26:27  and ends at 1:43:13.  It can be heard here.

Friday, May 14, 2021

Ed Rendell Endorses Carlos Vega For D.A.

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Carlos Vega Attacks Larry Krasner As 'Rich White Elitist'

By Ralph Cipriano

In their last public debate of the campaign for D.A., Carlos Vega the challenger repeatedly blasted incumbent Larry Krasner as a "white, rich out-of-touch elitist."

In a 94-minute virtual debate on WURD, Vega explained how he grew up poor in Spanish Harlem in the Bronx, and that when he worked at the D.A.'s office, he was a single dad raising two kids. 

For 15 years, Vega said, he worked by day as a homicide prosecutor in the D.A.'s office. And at night, Vega said, he supported his family by working a second job at UPS, loading and unloading delivery trucks. 

"As you see, a campaign is a rich man's game," Vega said. "I don't live in a million dollar house like Mr. Krasner. I don't drive a Tesla like Mr. Krasner. My children don't go to Friends [Select] like Mr. Krasner. I have to work and I have suffered financial losses as I'm raising a family."

"I grew up in poverty, I was poor, I was hungry," Vega explained. "I worked two jobs to feed a family."

And then, Vega said after he served as the first Latino homicide prosecutor in the state for 30 years, he was fired unceremoniously in 2018 by "a white out-of-touch elitist" named Larry Krasner, who decided that a "Latino is not good enough to serve in this office."

That set Krasner off, who responded with an emotional speech of his own where he appeared near tears. Whether they were fake or not may require a formal investigation.

D.A. & Real Justice PAC Make Mockery Of Local Election Laws

By Ralph Cipriano

If Larry Krasner is reelected D.A. next Tuesday, it will be the second straight victory at the polls for an upstart band of lawless, libelous carpetbaggers from San Francisco known as the Real Justice PAC.

The Real Justice business model is to parachute out-of-town activists and tons of outside money and influence into local elections for D.A. that the carpetbaggers have no stake in. The result for the locals is a blitzkrieg. 

Who are the brains behind this gorilla operation? In 2018, while campaigning in California campaign for a fellow progressive prosecutor, Pamela Price, running for Alameda County D.A., Krasner pointed out in the crowd "two of the smartest political people I know in my world."

The first smart person that Krasner paid tribute to was Rebecca Bond, pictured above. She's the treasurer and co-founder of the Real Justice PAC, who has led the field operations in Krasner’s two campaigns for D.A. It was Bond, as Krasner’s political guru, who assembled a team of out-of-town activists and brought them here to Philadelphia in 2017 to elect Krasner with innovative high-tech strategies that bombarded targeted voters with 36,000 phone calls and more than 160,000 text messages.

Bond previously served as the PAC's advisor to both Bernie Sanders's 2016 presidential campaign and the 2018 Beto O'Rourke for Texas Senate Campaign. Since 2016, she has set up two LLCs, a nonprofit and three PACs, including Real Justice, all of which operate out of the same small three-story building in the Mission District in San Francisco. And boy are they rolling in cash. 

Since 2017, campaign finance records show, more than $10 million has flowed through Bond’s three PACs. Bond has subsequently redistributed the money to her LLCs and nonprofit, in addition to funding various progressive political activities around the country, such as Larry Krasner’s two campaigns for D.A. 

Dept. Of CYA: D.A. Issues Tardy Warrants For Two Teen Robbers

By Ralph Cipriano

Councilwoman Helen Gym may still be silent. But for the incompetent D.A.'s office under Larry Krasner, it was time to play cover your ass.

At 1:38 a.m. on April 28th, police reported that two Asian women, ages 46 and 51, were assaulted, beaten and robbed by a group of juveniles in the vicinity of the 100 block of N. 10th Street.  The first victim, age 46, was pushed to the ground and punched in the head. The second victim, age 51, was punched in the left ear.

The robbers made off with Pennsylvania ID cards, credit cards, a brand new iPhone 10, and a total of $7,000 in cash. Police called to the scene of a robbery in progress at 10th and Cherry apprehended two black males -- Maurice Pollard, 18, and Zahkeir Norman, 14, both of West Philadelphia. 

The two suspects were arrested by the police after they were positively identified by the victims as among the suspects who were there when they beaten and robbed. But when the incompetent D.A.'s office's charging unit declined to prosecute the case, both suspects were subsequently released.

Today, after the D.A.'s office reversed itself and issued arrest warrants for both Pollard and Norman, the police detective bureau in the 6th District issued a "patrol alert" city wide to more than 6,000 cops, saying that both suspects were wanted for the April 28th robbery, theft and related offenses. 

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

D.A. Declines To Charge Two Teens In Robbery Of Asian Women

By Ralph Cipriano

On Twitter, Councilwoman Helen Gym has been outspoken about how the office of District Attorney Larry Krasner is supposedly "defined by the discretion, judgment, and decency of its occupant."

"We won't go back," Gym tweeted, adding, "Vote @Krasner4DA."

Gym, who has also been outspoken about her opposition to anti-Asian violence, however, has been silent for the past few days as BigTrial has been seeking comment from her about a recent local example of anti-Asian violence that D.A. Krasner's office declined to prosecute.

At 1:38 a.m. on April 28th, police reported that two Asian women, ages 46 and 51, were assaulted, beaten and robbed by a group of juveniles in the vicinity of the 100 block of N. 10th Street.  The first victim, age 46, was pushed to the ground and punched in the head. The second victim, age 51, was punched in the left ear.

The robbers took the two women's bags and escaped on foot. They made off with Pennsylvania ID cards, credit cards, a brand new iPhone 10, and a total of $7,000 in cash. 

Thursday, May 6, 2021

Carlos Vega Filing Libel Suit Against D.A. Krasner & Shaun King

By Ralph Cipriano

In the campaign for Philly D.A., the gloves are officially off. 

And the increasingly hostile and overblown rhetoric emanating from the camp of the increasingly desperate incumbent, Larry Krasner, may ultimately come with a price tag. 

Carlos Vega, running for the Democratic nomination in the May 18th primary, yesterday filed notice of a libel and slander suit against D.A. Krasner's campaign committee, the Real Justice PAC of San Francisco PAC that is Krasner's biggest campaign contributor, and Shaun King, the PAC's co-founder.

The notice was filed in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court  on the day that Krasner and Vega competed in their only televised debate on NBC 10. At the debate, Krasner, looking as jumpy as Rodney Dangerfield, repeatedly called Vega a liar after just about everything the challenger said. And when the cameras went off, Krasner yelled at Vega to "grow up" before storming out of the studio and refusing to talk to reporters.

Maybe it was yesterday's notice of the libel suit that the D.A. was served with that set him off. In a press release, The Beasley Firm, which represents Vega, stated, "In the last week, Shaun King, through his social media platforms, and in coordination with Real Justice PAC and the Krasner campaign, has targeted maliciously false and misleading rhetoric at Mr. Vega to defame him in an effort to dissuade Philadelphians from voting for the change this city needs."

King began his online crusade by calling Vega a "super villain." And that was just the start of it.