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Sotomayor Rebukes Federal Prosecutor's Racial Trial Remarks

Justice Sonia Sotomayor strongly objected Monday to a Texas prosecutor’s reference to the race of the defendants as an argument to convince a jury they were involved in a drug deal.

The high court refused to hear the case of Bongani Calhoun, a black defendant who was convicted in the drug case, but Sotomayor wrote an unusual statement to “dispel any doubt” that turning away his appeal would “signal our tolerance of a federal prosecutor’s racially charged remark. It should not.”

Calhoun was arrested with several other men and charged with taking part in a drug conspiracy. He contended that while he went along on a road trip with friends, he did not know they planned to buy cocaine.

The prosecutor told the jury that the men were together in a hotel room. “You’ve got African Americans, you’ve got Hispanics, you’ve got a bag full of money. Does that tell you -- a light bulb doesn’t go off in your head and say, 'This is a drug deal'?"

Source: LA Times. Read full article. (link)

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    She'll still side with her racist prosecutor and the coppers.

  • Chris Mallory||

    The prosecutor was wrong to present facts?

  • Capt Ace Rimmer||

    No need to even reference the idea in Louisiana -- it's pathological down here.