KHOU11 Len Cannon one-on-one with Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg

   
Watch: Len Cannon one-on-one with Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg
KHOU 11 News Anchor Len Cannon talked with District Attorney Kim Ogg about where the indictment of six former HPD officers goes from here.

Watch Full Interview Here

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DA KIM OGG ANNOUNCES RESULTS OF PROTEST CASE REVIEW

June 10, 2020

While George Floyd was being eulogized Tuesday, prosecutors wrapped up their week-long review of protest-related charges, dismissing 796 criminal cases as a result.

Prosecutors conducted a review that divided the cases between those people who sought to do harm others and property vs. those arrested for simple civil disobedience. They began filing motions to dismiss before sunrise Tuesday. 

The cases dismissed were for non-violent misdemeanor offenses, mostly obstructing a highway and trespassing.

“The job of the prosecutor is to seek individualized justice in every case,” Ogg said. “While probable cause existed for the arrests of those people who refused to disperse after being ordered to do so by police, our young prosecutors worked hard to identify the few offenders who came to inflict harm on others and intentional damage to property.”

“The result of their case-by-case review is astounding,” Ogg said.

Out of a total of 654 individuals criminally charged as a result of the protests, only 51 adults and one juvenile now remain charged with active cases. Their cases include 35 misdemeanor charges and 19 felony charges; charges such as weapons offenses and aggravated assault of a peace officer. 

With the dismissals, the people whose cases were dismissed no longer charged don’t face the prospect of being saddled with a criminal prosecution that could jeopardize future educational, employment and other opportunities.  Expunctions will be agreed upon, although those charged need representation to clear their records. “With so many professionals wanting to contribute, I am confident that the criminal defense bar will volunteer their services to clean up the criminal records of all involved,” Ogg said.

Dismissing the charges also allows law-enforcement authorities to focus resources on those who endanger public safety, Ogg said.

“We will always protect the First Amendment rights of peaceful protestors,” Ogg said. “The only people I will be prosecuting are those who intentionally hurt others and intentionally destroy property.”

https://www.harriscountyda.com/da-kim-ogg-announces-results-protest-case-review

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Harris County DA dismisses nearly 800 cases against peaceful protesters arrested during police brutality marches

HOUSTON – The Harris County District Attorney dismissed nearly 800 cases against protesters who were arrested during marches against police brutality in the past three weeks.

DA Kim Ogg announced that prosecutors dismissed 796 cases after conducting a review that divided the cases into two groups — those who sought to do harm to others and property and those arrested for simple civil disobedience. Ogg’s office said they began filing motions to dismiss before sunrise Tuesday.

The cases dismissed were for non-violent misdemeanor offenses, mostly obstructing a highway and trespassing.

“The job of the prosecutor is to seek individualized justice in every case,” Ogg said in a press release. “While probable cause existed for the arrests of those people who refused to disperse after being ordered to do so by police, our young prosecutors worked hard to identify the few offenders who came to inflict harm on others and intentional damage to property.”

“The result of their case-by-case review is astounding,” Ogg said.

Only 51 adults and one juvenile now remain charged with active cases, which include 35 misdemeanor charges and 19 felony charges. Those charges range from weapons offenses to aggravated assault of a peace officer.

“With so many professionals wanting to contribute, I am confident that the criminal defense bar will volunteer their services to clean up the criminal records of all involved,” Ogg said.

She said by dismissing the charges, it will allow law enforcement authorities to focus resources on those who endanger public safety.

“We will always protect the First Amendment rights of peaceful protestors,” Ogg said. “The only people I will be prosecuting are those who intentionally hurt others and intentionally destroy property.”


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

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Brittany Taylor

Award-winning journalist, mother, YouTuber, social media guru, millennial, mentor, storyteller, University of Houston alumna and Houston-native.

https://www.click2houston.com/news/local/2020/06/10/harris-county-da-dismisses-nearly-800-cases-against-peaceful-protesters-arrested-during-police-brutality-marches/

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Prosecuting Civil Rights Violations In Houston

DA staff investigates all shootings by police

By Kim Ogg

While the widespread protests occurring in many American cities this week are unprecedented in recent decades, the tragedy of George Floyd’s death in police custody is, unfortunately, not uncommon. 

This heartbreaking catalyst for reforming the way police interact with minority men should also spotlight how "in custody" deaths are investigated by police and prosecutors.

The way police cases involving excessive force, deadly or otherwise, are investigated has often been dependent on the capacity and willingness of police investigators to investigate their own.  Having another law-enforcement agency review an incident may provide greater objectivity, but the process has troubled our nation’s conscience for decades. 

That is why, as the district attorney of the third most populous county in America, I fought for more prosecutors for the Civil Rights Division.  They independently investigate all shootings by police, allegations of excessive force, and in-custody deaths.

So far this year, Harris County has seen 20 officer-involved shootings and four alleged excessive force cases.  In each and every shooting, our specialized prosecutors independently review all the evidence, research all potential criminal charges and defenses, and present the cases to citizen-comprised grand juries to determine if charges are warranted. 

Whether or not a case is filed directly by prosecutors, such as the recent murder charge against former Houston Police Officer Gerald Goines, all felonies must ultimately be reviewed by grand juries of randomly selected citizens. 

With the welcome reform of grand jury selection, our civil rights prosecutors, since January 2017, have secured indictments against 29 jailers and/or police officers for offenses including assault, tampering with government documents, official oppression, and murder. We believe this number reflects our community’s intolerance for abuse and a 180-degree departure from years past. 

We remain mindful of the frustration of the families of those killed and the masses who want justice for police brutality victims. Like all things in criminal justice, this requires a balanced, reasonable, lawful, evidence-based approach to each case. The framework of our democracy requires due process for all, including accused officers.

As prosecutors, our mission is to see that justice is done. The public’s trust in our system depends on it.

My heart is with George Floyd’s family and loved ones, as Houston mourns his terrible loss. His memory should fuel efforts to improve our system and ensure fairness and justice for all.

 

Ogg is the Harris County District Attorney

 

Kim Ogg “DA staff investigates all shootings by police”

The Houston Chronicle. June 4, 2020

https://www.pressreader.com/usa/houston-chronicle/20200604/281998969682309

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