By Charisma L. Miller, Esq.
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
The race for Brooklyn District Attorney continues to heat up. Charles Hynes, the current and longtime DA, is up for reelection in 2013, and two challengers have announced their bid to run.
One of the candidates, Kenneth Thompson, is now calling for the New York State Attorney General to review the DA’s Office after Hynes’ office faced a number of wrongful conviction cases over the past few months.
Thompson, famous for representing the hotel housekeeper who accused Dominique Strauss-Kahn of sexual assault, found the several overturned convictions disturbing.
"In order for the people of Brooklyn to have faith in our criminal justice system, DA Hynes must refer overturned convictions to Attorney General [Eric] Schneiderman for review. Or he should explain to the public his refusal to do so. Justice demands nothing less," Thomson said in a press release.
This is not the first time that Thompson has criticized Hynes. When he began his campaign for DA, Thompson alluded that Brooklynites no longer have faith in the DA’s Office with Hynes at the helm.
“The people of Brooklyn have to have confidence that the criminal justice system is being run and operated based on integrity,” Thompson said. “They have to have faith in convictions that come out of the office."
Hynes’ campaign spokesperson George Arzt told the New York Law Journal that Hynes is proud of the work done by the Conviction Integrity Unit, the unit responsible for investigating cases of possible wrongful convictions.
Abe George, Hynes’ other opponent, has recently criticized Hynes for what he sees is the incumbent’s lack of judgment in participating in a docu-series television show titled “Brooklyn DA.”
The series, which is scheduled to air on CBS on May 21, will look at Hynes as he prepares for the contested re-election race as well as the work of the DA’s Office in prosecuting some high-profile cases.
George has requested that CBS halt the show’s broadcast. In a cease and desist letter, George asserted that the show violates New York State campaign finance laws and acts as a “de facto infomercial” for Hynes’ campaign. There is no indication that CBS will delay the show’s broadcast.