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Over Easy: Bar Complaint Filed Against Prosecuting Attorney McCulloch and Two Assistant Prosecutors

St. Louis County Prosecutor Robert McCulloch

A bar complaint has been filed against St.Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch and two assistant prosecuting attorneys, Kathi Alizadeh and Sheila Whirley. The complaint was filed by James R. Dowd (an attorney and former judge), Robert Ramsey (an attorney),  Christi Griffin (a former attorney who is the founder and president of the Ethics Project), and seven citizens of the State of Missouri. They allege that the three prosecutors committed multiple violations of the Rules of Professional Conduct during the grand jury investigation of the Michael Brown shooting.

You can read the 11-page complaint here.

Some of the allegations are:

– Presenting witnesses to the grand jury – including Darren Wilson – who McCulloch, Alizadeh and Whirley knew or should have known would make false statements.

– Presenting the grand jury with a legal instruction ruled unconstitutional for decades.

– Mislabeling and misplacing evidence related to key witness Dorian Johnson.

– Failing to provide specific charges to the jury after “dumping” thousands of pages of interviews and evidence on them.

CBS reports,

Christi Griffin has said initial reports from the Ferguson police chief that Darren Wilson did not know Michael Brown was suspected in an earlier convenience store robbery were changed in testimony before the grand jury, and she believes that represents perjury.

“He is the one that is allowing that perjured testimony to be presented to the grand jury, and that is a direct violation of the Code of Professional Ethics,” she said.

McCulloch also admitted that he knew Witness 40 had lied to the grand jury, but she testified anyway and the prosecutors did not inform the members of the grand jury that they knew she lied. She was an important witness because she was the only witness who backed Darren Wilson’s version of the shooting, specifically the ‘bull rush’ description of Brown charging at Wilson. Turns out she was not there and did not witness the shooting.

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Frederick Leatherman

Frederick Leatherman

I am a former law professor and felony criminal defense lawyer who practiced in state and federal courts for 30 years specializing in death penalty cases, forensics, and drug cases.

I taught criminal law, criminal procedure, law and forensics, and trial advocacy for three years after retiring from my law practice.

I also co-founded Innocence Project Northwest (IPNW) at the University of Washington School of Law in Seattle and recruited 40 lawyers who agreed to work pro bono, assisted by law students, representing 17 innocent men and women wrongfully convicted of sexually abusing their children in the notorious Wenatchee Sex Ring witch-hunt prosecutions during the mid 90s. All 17 were freed from imprisonment.

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