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Prosecutors who falsify or withhold evidence could become felons under proposed state legislation – The Orange County Register

August 30, 2016

Prosecutors who intentionally withhold or falsify evidence could be charged with a felony under a new bill winding through the state Legislature.

The proposal by Assemblywoman Patty Lopez, D-San Fernando, comes as prosecutors in Orange County face accusations that they’ve routinely misused jailhouse informants and withheld information from defense attorneys.

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It has been about 10 years now since the controversy with Pima County Attorneys Ken Peasely and David White. Both are now deceased and few people discuss the accusations of prosecutorial misconduct levied against them. The charges were serious. Mr. Peasely lost his license to practice law and Mr. White, had he not died, would have had to face a similar process.

Larger punishments like criminal charges do little to curb prosecutors or help them police themselves. It is the defense attorney working diligently and speaking loudly against such abuses that ultimately reveals the corrupt bad guys.