History > 2016 > USA > Justice (I)
Sentenced to 15 Months,
and Apologizes for Sex Abuse
APRIL 27, 2016
The New York Times
By MONICA DAVEY,
and MITCH SMITH
CHICAGO — J. Dennis Hastert, once among this nation’s most
powerful politicians, was sentenced to 15 months in prison on Wednesday for
illegally structuring bank transactions in an effort to cover up his sexual
abuse of young members of a wrestling team he coached decades ago.
Mr. Hastert, 74, who made an unlikely rise from beloved small-town wrestling
coach in Illinois to speaker of the House in Washington, sat in a wheelchair in
a federal courtroom here as a judge announced his fate.
“The defendant is a serial child molester,” said Judge Thomas M. Durkin of
Federal District Court in a tough rebuke of the former speaker before issuing
his sentence. The judge added, “Nothing is more stunning than having ‘serial
child molester’ and ‘speaker of the House’ in the same sentence.”
Judge Durkin pointed out the vulnerability of Mr. Hastert’s young victims, and
said they had been damaged for years. “If there’s a public shaming of the
defendant because of the conduct he’s engaged in, so be it,” he said.
Mr. Hastert has suffered a series of ailments in recent months including a
stroke, a blood stream infection and a spinal infection. “There are no
guarantees that the defendant won’t get sicker in prison,” the judge said.
“There are no guarantees that he won’t get sicker at home.”
He said he would recommend that Mr. Hastert be sent to a prison hospital. “This
is not meant to be a death sentence,” he said.
The felony count to which Mr. Hastert pleaded guilty carries a maximum sentence
of five years in prison. His lawyers had sought probation, and as part of a plea
deal, prosecutors had said they would support a sentence of six months or less.
The judge also imposed a $250,000 fine.
The sentence followed Mr. Hastert’s admission that he had molested members of
his wrestling team, and his apology for the harm that he caused them. “The thing
I want to do today is say I’m sorry,” Mr. Hastert said.
That followed the tearful statement by one of his victims, who described being
sexually abused as he lay on a locker room training table decades ago.
“As a high school wrestler I looked up to Coach Hastert — he was a key figure in
my life,” said the victim, Scott Cross, now a 53-year-old businessman in
Chicago. Stopping once to compose himself, he said, “I felt intense pain, shame
Mr. Cross said that he had gone years without speaking of what had happened, and
that the experience had caused him lifelong trauma. “I’ve always felt that what
Coach Hastert had done to me was my darkest secret,” he said, as Mr. Hastert
Mr. Cross, is the brother of a former Illinois House Republican leader, Tom
Cross. Judge Durkin is the brother of another prominent Republican lawmaker in
Illinois, Jim Durkin.
Mr. Hastert’s fall from genial retired House speaker and hometown celebrity on
the far edge of Chicago’s western suburbs was sudden and steep.
For decades, both in Washington and in Yorkville, where Mr. Hastert had coached
the local high school wrestling team to state championship, he had a reputation
for appearing down-to-earth and steady — with little hint of scandal.
Mr. Hastert, who was first elected to Congress in 1986, found himself catapulted
to speaker in 1999, in part, because he seemed to be a safe, agreeable option:
The Republicans’ first choice, Robert L. Livingston of Louisiana, stepped away
from the post even before he took it, acknowledging adulterous affairs in his
Mr. Hastert grew up delivering feed for his family’s farm supply business, and
held onto his plain-speaking style long after he left teaching and coaching for
a life in the state legislature in Illinois and then in Washington, before he
became a high-paid lobbyist. “I’ve always thought of myself as a kid from the
cornfields,” Mr. Hastert wrote in his 2004 memoir, “Speaker: Lessons from Forty
Years in Coaching and Politics.”
Mr. Hastert never appeared to shy away from the wrestling world he had built in
the 1960s, 1970s and early 1980s as a coach at Yorkville High School, continuing
to advocate for the sport in Congress and to hire former student wrestlers as
his aides and advisers.
Yet it was a former student wrestler, prosecutors say, who eventually would lead
to Mr. Hastert’s downfall after a series of revelations that left many — even
Mr. Hastert’s onetime assistant wrestling coach — stunned. Some wondered how the
abuse could be kept secret in such a small town for so long.
Mr. Hastert was charged in May with lying to the F.B.I. and making cash
withdrawals in a way designed to hide the fact that he was paying $3.5 million
to a former wrestler for misconduct from years earlier. The former wrestler and
family friend of Mr. Hastert, identified in documents as Individual A, told of
abuse in a motel room during a wrestling camp trip when he was 14.
Prosecutors said Individual A approached Mr. Hastert to talk about the incident
years later, in about 2010, asking Mr. Hastert whether there had been other
victims and whether he would pay Individual A for what he had done.
After the payments began, federal authorities took notice of large, unexplained
withdrawals Mr. Hastert was making from his bank. When told that large
withdrawals had to be reported, Mr. Hastert began drawing smaller sums,
prosecutors say, to avoid notice.
Federal investigators approached Mr. Hastert in late 2014, inquiring about the
many withdrawals — he had paid Individual A some $1.7 million by then — and Mr.
Hastert said he simply did not trust banks and was keeping the money in a safe
place. Not long after, Mr. Hastert’s lawyer contacted officials with a different
story, prosecutors say: Mr. Hastert was the victim of extortion by Individual A
for false molestation accusations, the lawyer said.
But after recording conversations between Mr. Hastert and Individual A, the
authorities concluded that there was no extortion. They found that Individual A
had wanted to bring lawyers in to negotiate a formal settlement with Mr.
Hastert, but that he had declined to involve anyone else.
Prosecutors say Individual A was not the only student molested. At least three
other men — all former members of the team, as young as 14 — said they, too, had
been abused. The acts included “touching of minors’ groin area and genitals or
oral sex with a minor,” prosecutors said. One man, Stephen Reinboldt, told his
sister, Jolene Burdge, of repeated incidents of abuse, all through high school;
he died in 1995.
Mr. Hastert has not been charged with sexual abuse, and prosecutors said the
reported incidents were beyond the statutes of limitation. Still, Mr. Hastert’s
lawyers have said he was “deeply sorry and apologizes for his misconduct that
occurred decades ago and the resulting harm he caused to others.”
In the case of at least Mr. Cross, the former wrestler who testified on
Wednesday, Mr. Hastert’s lawyers had said that he did not contest the
allegations, but that “in all candor he has no current recollection of the
A long list of supporters — from Mr. Hastert’s wife Jean to Tom DeLay, the
former House majority leader — sent letters of support for Mr. Hastert to Judge
Durkin, who is the brother of a Republican state lawmaker in Illinois. “He
doesn’t deserve what he is going through,” Mr. DeLay wrote.
Other supporters included wrestling coaches, lawyers, former students and former
law enforcement officials. Mr. Hastert’s brother, Dave, wrote that he feared Mr.
Hastert would fall into depression, given his circumstances and the physical
ailments that have left him in a wheelchair. “If it were me, I’d be wheeling
that chair to the highway, and waiting for a semi,” his brother wrote.
“By any measure, appearing before this court to receive its sentence will be the
most difficult day in Mr. Hastert’s life,” his lawyers wrote in a memo to the
judge. “Mr. Hastert’s fall from grace has been swift and devastating.”
Prosecutors have argued that a sentence for Mr. Hastert must balance Mr.
Hastert’s years of public service with a need to “avoid a public perception that
the powerful are treated differently than ordinary citizens when facing
sentencing for a serious crime.”
Mr. Hastert’s history, the prosecutors have written, is “marred by stunning
“While the defendant achieved great success, reaping all the benefits that went
with it,’ they wrote, “these boys struggled, and all are still struggling now
with what defendant did to them.”
Follow The New York Times’s politics and Washington coverage on Facebook and
Twitter, and sign up for the First Draft politics newsletter.
Dennis Hastert Sentenced to 15 Months, and Apologizes for Sex
April 27, 2016,
Justice Dept. Condemns
Profit-Minded Court Policies
Targeting the Poor
MARCH 14, 2016
The New York Times
By MATT APUZZO
WASHINGTON — The Justice Department on Monday called on state
judges across the country to root out unconstitutional policies that have locked
poor people in a cycle of fines, debt and jail. It was the Obama
administration’s latest effort to take its civil rights agenda to the states,
which have become a frontier in the fight over the rights of the poor and the
disabled, the transgender and the homeless.
In a letter to chief judges and court administrators, Vanita Gupta, the Justice
Department’s top civil rights prosecutor, and Lisa Foster, who leads a program
on court access, warned against operating courthouses as for-profit ventures. It
chastised judges and court staff members for using arrest warrants as a way to
collect fees. Such policies, the letter said, made it more likely that poor
people would be arrested, jailed and fined anew — all for being unable to pay in
the first place.
It is unusual for the Justice Department to write such a letter. It last did so
in 2010, when the department told judges that they were obligated to provide
translators for people who could not speak English. The letters do not have the
force of law, but they declare the federal government’s position and put local
officials on notice about its priorities.
Ms. Gupta said that in some cities, hefty fines served as a sort of bureaucratic
cover charge for the right to seek justice. People cannot even start the process
of defending themselves until they have settled their debts.
“This unconstitutional practice is often framed as a routine administrative
matter,” Ms. Gupta wrote. “For example, a motorist who is arrested for driving
with a suspended license may be told that the penalty for the citation is $300
and that a court date will be scheduled only upon the completion of a $300
The letter echoes the conclusions of the Justice Department’s investigation of
the Police Department and court in Ferguson, Mo. Investigators there concluded
that the court was a moneymaking venture, not an independent branch of
government. Ms. Gupta, who oversaw that investigation, has often cited Ferguson
as a cautionary tale in her speeches, describing how fines for minor offenses
like jaywalking pulled people into the criminal justice system and made it
impossible to escape.
The Obama administration has used letters, both in and out of court, to help
push the boundaries of civil rights law. In dozens of lawsuits around the
country, many of which involved local disputes, the Justice Department has filed
so-called statements of interest, throwing its weight behind private lawsuits.
It has filed such statements in matters involving legal aid for the poor,
transgender students, juvenile prisoners and people who take videos of police
After the 2010 letter, the Justice Department opened investigations into the
court systems in Colorado and North Carolina.
The department has broad authority to determine how the nation’s laws are
enforced and, in many ways, how criminal defendants are treated in the nation’s
94 Federal District Courts. But most people interact only with the local or
state courts, and that is where their impressions of the fairness of the
American judicial system are formed.
Equal access to the courts is a constitutional right, and both Attorney General
Loretta Lynch and her predecessor, Eric H. Holder Jr., made court treatment a
priority. Ms. Lynch recently spoke in forceful terms about Ferguson, and has
called for fairness in how courts set bail, levy fines and determine sentences.
“When bail is set unreasonably high, people are behind bars only because they
are poor,” Ms. Lynch said at the White House in December. “Not because they’re a
danger or a flight risk — only because they are poor. They don’t have money to
get out of jail, and they certainly don’t have money to flee anywhere. Other
people who do have the means can avoid the system, setting inequality in place
from the beginning.”
The issue has helped forge alliances between liberal civil rights groups and
conservative organizations. Grover Norquist, the conservative activist, spoke
last year at a White House summit meeting on poverty and incarceration. The
Institute for Justice, a libertarian organization, has brought lawsuits accusing
cities of using court fines to raise revenue.
Ms. Gupta wrote in her letter that courts were obligated to consider whether
defendants were able to pay their fines. And she discouraged judges from using
license suspensions as a punishment for missed payments. Doing so, she wrote,
made it harder for people to get to work and to court, and made it more likely
that they would fall further behind in their payments or face new penalties for
missing court appointments.
Some courts hire private contractors to run their probation departments, and Ms.
Gupta raised concerns about agreements that allow those contractors to profit
from discretionary fines that the companies themselves get to issue.
Along with the letter, the Justice Department announced on Monday that it would
offer $2.5 million in grants to help courts change their policies on fines.
Follow The New York Times’s politics and Washington coverage on
Facebook and Twitter, and sign up for the First Draft politics newsletter.
A version of this article appears in print on March 15, 2016,
on page A12 of the New York edition with the headline: Justice Dept. Tells State
Courts to End Policies That Prey
on the Poor.
Justice Dept. Condemns Profit-Minded Court Policies Targeting the
March 24, 2016,
Wrong Man Convicted
of 1957 Murder in Illinois,
MARCH 25, 2016
The New York Times
By JOHN ELIGON
It was hailed as a victory for the persistence of justice. Some
five and a half decades after a 7-year-old girl was kidnapped, strangled and
stabbed in rural northern Illinois, Jack McCullough, a military veteran and
former police officer, was convicted of the killing in 2012 in what was believed
to be one of the oldest American cold cases to result in an arrest.
But now, the local prosecutor says that his office locked up the wrong man.
Richard Schmack, the state’s attorney for DeKalb County, Ill., about 60 miles
west of Chicago, said on Friday that a review of evidence not presented at the
trial has convinced him that Mr. McCullough, 76, could not have committed the
crime. As such, Mr. Schmack, who was elected to his post after Mr. McCullough’s
conviction, said he would not contest the defendant’s motion to have his
conviction overturned at a hearing in county court on Tuesday.
Pending a judge’s review, Mr. McCullough could be released from prison.
“All the evidence I found pointed toward him being innocent,” Mr. Schmack said
in an interview on Friday.
Mr. Schmack’s decision represented a remarkable turn in a case that shocked
small-town Sycamore, and drew special attention from J. Edgar Hoover, then the
director of the F.B.I., and President Dwight D. Eisenhower. The killing of the
girl, Maria Ridulph, on Dec. 3, 1957, and the eventual conviction of Mr.
McCullough inspired a book and a documentary. Maria’s brother, Charles Ridulph,
said he was not surprised by Mr. Schmack’s decision because the prosecutor had
been giving him regular updates during the investigation, and he seemed to be
headed in that direction. But Mr. Ridulph, 70, said he was upset by the
“He’s thrown out all of the evidence that’s been presented in court,” Mr.
Ridulph said of the prosecutor. “It’s been a very trying day, and we feel
helpless because we have no one representing us in these proceedings, no one
representing the victim or us as victims in these proceedings because Richard
Schmack, as the state’s attorney, is acting as the defense counsel.”
Adding to the pain, Mr. Ridulph said, was that Mr. Schmack notified him of the
decision in an email on Friday morning, which Mr. Ridulph, a Lutheran deacon,
read before he left to lead a Good Friday service.
Mr. Schmack explained his reason for believing that Mr. McCullough, who is
serving a life sentence in state prison, was innocent in a 38-page court filing.
Mr. Schmack said he reviewed thousands of documents that were ruled inadmissible
at trial, including reports from an F.B.I. investigation conducted at the time
of the killing. The review was in response to a motion by Mr. McCullough for a
new trial after he lost several previous appeals.
The smoking gun for Mr. Schmack was evidence that Mr. McCullough, who at the
time went by John Tessier, placed a collect phone call to his parents from a pay
phone at a post office in Rockford, Ill., at 6:57 p.m. on the night Maria was
abducted. Other evidence, Mr. Schmack said, showed that Maria was probably
kidnapped around 6:30 p.m. at the earliest, and it would have been impossible
for Mr. McCullough to have taken her and made it to Rockford, about 40 miles
away, on the night of a snowstorm, in time to place the call. Mr. Ridulph
disputed Mr. Schmack’s timeline, saying that the one created by the state police
that had his sister being abducted around 6:15 p.m. was more accurate.
Mr. McCullough, who was 17 at the time of the murder, was never arrested and
moved to Seattle. But Mr. McCullough’s sister told the authorities that their
mother told her in 1994, when she was on her deathbed, that Mr. McCullough had
killed Maria. The state police reopened the investigation in 2008.
There was no physical evidence linking Mr. McCullough to the killing. But a
friend of Maria’s, who was 8 at the time of the abduction, testified during the
trial in 2012 that Mr. McCullough had approached them that day when they were
playing and had taken her for a piggyback ride before she disappeared.
Mr. Schmack questioned the reliability of that testimony.
“I think it’s an incredibly difficult situation,” said Mr. Schmack, 59, who has
lived in Sycamore for 31 years and lives around the corner from Maria’s brother.
Mr. Ridulph said he hoped that the judge would intervene, maintain the
conviction and not allow Mr. McCullough to go free.
A version of this article appears in print on March 26, 2016,
on page A11 of the New York edition with the headline:
Wrong Man Convicted of 1957 Murder in Illinois,
Wrong Man Convicted of 1957 Murder in Illinois, Prosecutor Says,
NYT, March 25, 2016,
FEB. 12, 2016
The New York Times
By THE EDITORIAL BOARD
The Opinion Pages | Editorial
In 2015, 149 people convicted of crimes large and small — from
capital murder to burglary — were exonerated. It is the highest yearly total
since this grim form of record-keeping began, in 1989.
In that time, there have been at least 1,733 exonerations across the country,
and the pace keeps picking up. On average, about three convicted people are now
exonerated of their crimes every week, according to the annual report of the
National Registry of Exonerations. The registry defines an exoneration as a case
in which someone convicted of a crime is cleared of all charges based on new
evidence of innocence.
The individual cost to those wrongly convicted is steep: Last year’s group spent
an average of more than 14 years behind bars. Five had been sentenced to death.
Amazingly, half of the exonerations involved cases in which no crime occurred at
all — for example, a conviction of murder by arson that later turned out to be
based on faulty fire science.
Equally eye-opening is the list of reasons behind these miscarriages of justice.
For instance, 27 of last year’s exonerations were for convictions based on a
false confession. This happened most often in homicide cases in which the
defendant was a juvenile, intellectually disabled, mentally ill or some
combination of the three. In nearly half of all 2015 exonerations, the defendant
pleaded guilty before trial.
These numbers are a bracing reminder that admissions of guilt are unreliable far
more often than is generally believed. Some defendants, especially the young or
mentally impaired, can be pushed to admit guilt when they are innocent. Some
with prior criminal records may not be able to afford bail but don’t want to
spend months in pretrial detention or risk a much longer sentence if they choose
to go to trial.
Official misconduct — including perjury, withholding of exculpatory evidence and
coercive interrogation practices — occurred in three of every four exonerations
involving homicide, and it was an important factor in many other cases as well.
As high as these exoneration numbers are, they still understate the scope of the
problem, since not all cases involving misconduct come to light.
The good news is that Americans are starting to grasp the depth of the problem.
The Innocence Project, now more than 20 years old, has shown again and again how
many ways a conviction can be obtained wrongfully. And in-depth investigations
of questionable murder convictions by popular shows like “Serial” and “Making a
Murderer” have led to calls for greater prosecutorial accountability.
As technologies like DNA testing have become more widely used, some prosecutors’
offices have begun to take responsibility for correcting their own errors. In
the last seven years, almost two dozen offices in 11 states and the District of
Columbia have opened conviction-integrity units to re-examine old cases. But the
units vary widely in effectiveness. Half have never exonerated anyone, while
two, in Brooklyn and in Harris County, Tex., were responsible for one-third of
last year’s exonerations.
It is good to see any degree of self-reflection and accountability from
prosecutors, who wield enormous and often unreviewed power in the criminal
justice system. It would be even better for them to put in place safeguards that
would prevent wrongful convictions in the first place.
Follow The New York Times Opinion section on Facebook and
Twitter, and sign up for the Opinion Today newsletter.
A version of this editorial appears in print on February 13, 2016, on page A20
of the New York edition with the headline: Prisoners Exonerated, Prosecutors
Prisoners Exonerated, Prosecutors Exposed,
NYT, Feb. 12, 2016,
Georgia Police Officer
Indicted for Murder
of Unarmed Black Man
JAN. 21, 2016
The New York Times
By ALAN BLINDER
DECATUR, Ga. — A white police officer was indicted here Thursday
on six counts, including felony murder, in the fatal shooting last year of an
unarmed black man who was naked and described as acting in an erratic manner.
The indictment of Officer Robert Olsen of the DeKalb County Police Department
came about two weeks after the district attorney said he would ask a grand jury
to pursue criminal charges in the death of Anthony Hill, a 27-year-old Air Force
The indictment, which District Attorney Robert D. James Jr. of DeKalb County
announced at a Thursday night news conference, with Mr. Hill’s family members
seated in the first row, was an emotional and surprising development. It played
out in this city just east of Atlanta where, it seemed, few people had expected
that Officer Olsen would be charged with murder. Mr. James said a judge had
issued an arrest warrant and that Officer Olsen would soon be arrested.
“This is a day in history,” said a lawyer for Mr. Hill’s family, Christopher M.
Chestnut, who also said, “Hopefully, this will set a precedent for discouraging
In an email Thursday night, Officer Olsen’s lawyer, Don Samuel, said he was
“disappointed in the decision of the grand jury.”
“The defense, of course, was not permitted to present any of the witnesses who
were present at the scene, or any expert witnesses who would testify that
Officer Olsen’s reaction to the threat of violent injury was reasonable,” said
Mr. Samuel, who added, “When this case is presented in a fair manner to a jury
in an open courtroom, Officer Olsen will be fully exonerated.”
Although Mr. James had announced this month that he would seek an indictment,
prosecutors faced an especially complex challenge because of the legal
protections that are guaranteed to law enforcement officers in Georgia. Those
safeguards, which are among the country’s most extensive, give accused officers
access to the grand jury’s meeting, as well as the opportunity to address the
panel without the threat of cross-examination or a rebuttal by prosecutors.
Officer Olsen spoke to the grand jury for about 20 minutes, his lawyer said. He
has not publicly discussed the shooting on March 9, seven months to the day
after a police killing in Ferguson, Mo., that spurred large protests and
prompted a continuing national debate about race and law enforcement practices.
Race was an inescapable element of the outcry surrounding Mr. Hill’s shooting in
DeKalb County, where nearly 55 percent of the 722,000 or so residents are black.
But in the wake of the killing, Mr. Hill’s family members focused on what they
described as the failure of Officer Olsen and the Police Department to respond
appropriately to a man who suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder.
According to court filings and witnesses, Officer Olsen was sent to Mr. Hill’s
apartment complex in Chamblee, northeast of Atlanta, while the man was in the
midst of what his family described in a lawsuit as “a nonviolent mental
episode.” He had, for instance, repeatedly jumped from the balcony of his
second-floor apartment, and his speech was unintelligible.
After the arrival of Officer Olsen, who had a Taser device and had received
training about how to deal with people suffering from mental illness, witnesses
said that Mr. Hill did not comply with the officer’s directions to stop his
advance. Mr. Hill’s hands, they said, were raised or at his sides before Officer
Olsen opened fire. Mr. Hill, his family said in a court document last year, “was
unarmed, unclothed and displaying no signs of aggression at the time of the
shooting, and he presented no threat to Officer Olsen or anyone else.”
Mr. Hill’s family has filed a wrongful-death lawsuit, in Federal District Court
in Atlanta, against Officer Olsen and the county.
In the lawsuit, which is pending, Mr. Hill’s family said Officer Olsen had “a
long and extensive history of aggressive conduct” and “propensity toward anger
when dealing with members of the public.” On Thursday, Mr. Samuel described
Officer Olsen as “a distinguished member of the Police Department who had never
been accused of using excessive force and had never previously discharged his
firearm in the line of duty.”
But the official investigation into Officer Olsen’s conduct, not the federal
lawsuit, has consumed much of the attention here. That inquiry included the
closed-door reviews by civil and criminal grand juries. In October, the civil
panel, an advisory group, recommended that officials continue their
investigation into Mr. Hill’s death.
During an appearance before the civil grand jury, Mr. Hill’s family has said,
Officer Olsen said he had believed that Mr. Hill was under the influence of a
substance like PCP, and that he had “cast the blame for the shooting” on the
In its summary of the officer’s testimony, Mr. Hill’s family said that Officer
Olsen described the department as having failed “to train him and the other
officers in the Department in identifying and deciphering nonviolent or
nonaggressive psychological episodes versus the threat of a potentially violent
encounter with a citizen high on PCP.”
By early January, though, Mr. James had decided to ask the grand jury to charge
Officer Olsen with felony murder, aggravated assault, violation of oath of
office and making a false statement.
Grand juries in Georgia have rarely returned indictments against police officers
who were involved in shootings. In October, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
reported that the state had logged more than 170 fatal police shootings since
2010, and that just one police officer had been charged in connection with the
killing of a civilian. (The case against that officer, in a city south of
Atlanta, was ultimately dismissed.)
Prosecutions have been scarce, lawyers say, at least in part because of the
protections afforded to officers in Georgia. Mr. James implicitly criticized
those rules just weeks ago, but their supporters argue that they serve as
crucial checks on prosecutorial authority.
“The grand jury has to hear, without a doubt, the reasonable, subjective views
of the officer and the reason why a law enforcement officer would act,” Lance
LoRusso, a defense lawyer who works with the Georgia division of the Fraternal
Order of Police, said this month. “Private citizens don’t get paid to use deadly
force; law enforcement officers do.”
On Thursday night, members of Mr. Hill’s family emerged from the courthouse to
cheers from protesters who had gathered outside for days.
“I’m just glad that the jury saw what we already saw: the evidence, the truth,”
said Carolyn Giummo, Mr. Hill’s mother.
A version of this article appears in print on January 22, 2016,
on page A13 of the New York edition with the headline: White Officer Is Indicted
in Killing of Black Man.
Georgia Police Officer Indicted for Murder of Unarmed Black Man,
JAN. 21, 2016, NYT,