New York Cops Acquitted of Rape Charges

The Manhattan District Attorney's office just lost a big rape case. After a six week trial and seven days of deliberations, the jury acquitted two police officers of rape, burglary, and falsifying business records, and convicted only on misdemeanor official conduct charges. The cops were immediately fired due to misdemeanor convictions, and they face up to two years in jail, but they avoid a potential 25 year sentence on the rape charge.

Congrats to my pal Joe Tacopina who defended officer Kenneth Moreno. There was no DNA evidence in the case.

The jury placed little faith in what prosecutors thought was their best evidence - a secret recording in which Moreno seemingly admits to the rape, he said. "He said on that tape 24 times that he did not have sex with that woman," Tacopina said.


Some feminist groups are planning a protest. Were they in court to hear all the evidence? They say the evidence was overwhelming. At least some members of the jury, which did hear the evidence, didn't think so. The feminists want more training for cops on sexual harassment and sexual assault. More training would be good, but why not tie the request to a case where cops were found guilty of sexual misconduct instead of not guilty?

Question: Will Tacopina team up with Brafman in the Dominique Strauss-Kahn case?

< Thursday Morning Open Thread | Dominique Strauss-Kahn's Lawyers Complain to DA About Leaks >
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  • Display: Sort:
    No witnesses, no DNA, no nothing except (none / 0) (#1)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Thu May 26, 2011 at 04:45:17 PM EST
    "he said/she said." I'm surprised this went to trial at all. I assume it did go to trial because of the high profile defendants?

    i think i'd be more impressed, (none / 0) (#2)
    by cpinva on Thu May 26, 2011 at 06:44:24 PM EST
    were it not for the fact that police are routinely found not guilty, by scared sh*tless juries, regardless of the evidence.

    this may be the instance where they actually weren't guilty of the crimes charged, but the historical trend doesn't help their case, in the court of public opinion.

    On what do you base your opinion re (none / 0) (#4)
    by oculus on Thu May 26, 2011 at 10:33:57 PM EST
    "scared sh*tless juries"?  

    let's see now, (none / 0) (#7)
    by cpinva on Fri May 27, 2011 at 08:53:07 AM EST
    does the name "rodney king" ring a bell with you? i thought it might. in spite of video evidence to the contrary, police cleared of all charges. and that's just the first case that comes to mind. and pretty much any case of "death by taser". need i go on?

    the police, it seems, have convinced the proletariat that, should they dare treat them like any other citizen, their safety may well be at risk.

    "nice store you have there, be a shame if the police were delayed getting to it, in the event of a robbery."


    I don't recall members of the Rodney King (none / 0) (#8)
    by oculus on Fri May 27, 2011 at 10:32:41 AM EST
    state court jury stating they acquitted because they were "scared sh*tless."  

    Rodney (none / 0) (#10)
    by Socraticsilence on Fri May 27, 2011 at 01:19:38 PM EST
    King? If anything shouldn't the public reaction to the first acquittal in that case have pushed potential jurors to convict out of fear, rather than risking a repeat of the LA riots?

    I like the statement (none / 0) (#3)
    by Madeline on Thu May 26, 2011 at 07:32:55 PM EST
    "but why not tie the request to a case where cops were found guilty of sexual misconduct instead of not guilty?"

    It was sexual misconduct.....well, honestly I believe he's guilty.  I know the jury believed there was reasonable doubt and maybe so, I don't know. Seems you must have DNA for a guilty verdict according to the jurors.  

    He testified that he kissed the woman on the forehead and snuggled with her in her bed,wearing nothing but a bra, he said. but insisted that they did not have sex.

    he lied to her about wearing a condom because she had threatened to make a scene in his precinct station house.

    Officer Moreno also made other statements during the conversation that suggested he had had sex with the woman.  

    both police offices returned to the apartment three times during the night.r  

    Moreno says he developed a rapport with her and returned to comfort her (because he was a recovering alcoholic).

    I am sorry but that is one really dumb cop. Well, maybe not so dumb,  He was found not guilty.

    During the taped conversation (none / 0) (#9)
    by ding7777 on Fri May 27, 2011 at 11:17:45 AM EST
    compare Moreno's rambling evasive responses regarding sex/condom with this single straight forward denial of taking the cell phone:

    [CW]: Did I have my phone on me? I can't find it.

    Moreno: Ok. I- I don't know what happened to your phone ok? I'm- I'm not going to steal your phone. Ok? And nobody I know is not going to steal a phone. I don't know what kind of phone you have, but uh, you know we can afford a phone. Ok?    link

    Does NY state permit audio taping without (none / 0) (#5)
    by oculus on Thu May 26, 2011 at 10:35:18 PM EST
    consent of both parties?

    looks like (none / 0) (#6)
    by Jeralyn on Thu May 26, 2011 at 10:38:35 PM EST
    This is one of those situations where (none / 0) (#11)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Fri May 27, 2011 at 04:06:17 PM EST
    I the jury may have come to the right verdict but my heart tells me that they were guilty.  My inner feminist is screaming that this is a terrible travesty of justice, but if the case isn't solid, what can you do?

    This is why I do M&A instead of litigation.  The moral conflict there bugs me.