24/7 Newsfeed

Put Reason 24/7 on Your Site

RSS

Follow Reason 24/7 on Twitter and via RSS

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)

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • 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.

advertisement