Sun needs more coverage of state's attorney race

September 07, 2010

During campaign season and other critical times, I look to the paper to see what its reporters and editors have to say about candidates and other issues. I may have missed this, but I can not find a recent article on the one issue that is dominating the race for Baltimore State's Attorney — incumbent Patricia Jessamy's policy to not prosecute cases that have only a single eyewitness as evidence. Her opponent, Gregg Bernstein, is making much of this issue, yet, it seems a reasonable decision to me in that it preserves her ability to prosecute the case should more evidence come to light. However, I may be wrong.

What I and other voters need is an in-depth analysis of this policy — how effective is it, is it used in other jurisdictions with crime and socio-demographic profiles that are similar to Baltimore's, what have been the outcomes when such cases are brought to trial? I'd like to get some facts on the table rather than mere assertions by a political challenger and defense by the incumbent. Such an analysis would be a real service to voters.

If The Sun has conducted such an analysis and I have missed it, please accept my apology. If it has not, I hope the paper will endeavor to undertake it.

Pam Bennett, Baltimore

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