Tag: Charles Schwarz

  • Schwarz Silenced—Vinegrad Caves

    The Charles Schwarz case is over, but contrary to prosecutor Alan Vinegrad, there has been no closure. In the September 23 Newsday, Vinegrad emphasized that Schwarz’s conviction on one count of perjury makes him “accountable in a very significant way for his role in the events surrounding Mr. Louima’s assault.” However, in the historic plea-bargain […]

  • A Reporter as Prosecutor

    Police speak of the theory of a crime, and lawyers have a theory of a case. After a split jury delivered a partial verdict (guilty on one of four counts) in the Charles Schwarz trial, federal prosecutor Alan Vinegrad issued his theory about an obstacle he had faced in his relentless pursuit of Schwarz. The […]

  • Three Strikes Is Still an Out

    Thirty-six jurors have heard the case against Charles Schwarz, the “Hero Cop” of tabloid fame in the Abner Louima case, and 36 jurors have voted to convict him of at least one felony. None of the three juries that tried him has acquitted him of even a single count related to the sodomizing of Louima, […]

  • No Peace, No Justice

    Whatever the outcome, the ultimate lesson of this case . . . is that the truth can be irretrievably muddied when the prosecution sets out to make a case rather than simply determine the facts. —Michael Daly, 2002 Pulitzer finalist for commentary, New York Daily News, July 10 In his third trial, his first as […]

  • A Prosecutor’s Revenge

    Any prosecutor will readily say that his or her primary role is to do justice—even if it means losing a case. However, in the hot pursuit of a defendant, that noble standard sometimes vanishes. Alan Vinegrad, interim U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District, has had two convictions in the Abner Louima case overturned by the […]

  • Protesting the Louima Decision

    A poster of a black police officer bearing the words “Salute Our Heroes” hangs from a light pole on the corner that intersects Flatbush and DeKalb avenues. A promotional piece for the Twin Towers Fund, the advertisement represents a grace period police officers have enjoyed following September 11, after a decade of being at odds […]

  • Schwarz: Justice or Technicalities?

    When Charles Schwarz was sent to prison for violating Abner Louima’s civil rights by joining Justin Volpe in the bathroom while Volpe viciously sodomized Louima, Schwarz said: “I refuse to go down quickly, and I refuse to lay down and die. Abner Louima was the victim of a brutal and horrendous crime, but that does […]

  • The Blue Wall of Baloney

    Does anybody remember Sergeant Patrick Walsh? Just last summer he was the Great White Hope, the “bombshell” witness the tabloids told us would finally clear ex-cop Charles Schwarz of participating in the station-house sodomizing of Abner Louima. Four years after the horrid events of August 1997—almost to the day—Walsh took the stand in Brooklyn Federal […]

  • The Wrong Man Gets a Second Chance

    The clearest and most accurate reaction to the unanimous decision by the three judges of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals to grant Charles Schwarz a new trial in the Abner Louima case was by Patricia Williams in the March 3 New York Times. She is a professor at Columbia University’s Law school, black, a […]

  • Hero Hoax

    Twenty-four jurors in two separate cases found Charles Schwarz guilty of participating in the sodomizing of Abner Louima. The second jury, which technically convicted him only of obstructing justice, did so after listening to Schwarz testify for hours that he was never even near the precinct bathroom. Rejecting Schwarz’s account, and the incredible attempt of […]