CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Sunday, March 9, 2008

CrimProf Laurie Levenson Discusses the Hate Crime Charging Dispute

Levenson From Loyola Law School CrimProf Laurie Levenson recently discussed attempted murder and other charges  that were filed Friday against two reputed Latino gang members accused of shooting a black 6-year-old boy in Harbor Gateway.

Despite demands from community activists, prosecutors did not file hate crime allegations against Ernesto Murillo, 25, of Harbor Gateway or Ismael Torres, 26, of Wilmington.

"We will continue to monitor and review the case as the evidence comes in," said Deputy District Attorney John Lonergan of the Hardcore Gang Division.

CrimProf Laurie Levenson said that, despite the emotion of the case, prosecutors have the ethical duty of filing only what they can prove in court.

"Each case has to be evaluated on its own merits," Levenson said. "Even when the community is upset, you just can't file charges unless there is evidence to support it." Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]

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