TribLIVE

| Opinion/The Review


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

The Jordan Miles case: Telling verdict

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Letters home ...

Traveling abroad for personal, educational or professional reasons?

Why not share your impressions — and those of residents of foreign countries about the United States — with Trib readers in 150 words?

The world's a big place. Bring it home with Letters Home.

Contact Colin McNickle (412-320-7836 or cmcnickle@tribweb.com).

Daily Photo Galleries

Friday, Aug. 10, 2012, 8:58 p.m.
 

The partial verdict reached by the jury in Jordan Miles' racially charged federal civil rights lawsuit against three Pittsburgh policemen is yet another indicator that clear evidence of law-enforcement wrongdoing in this case simply doesn't exist.

The jury of eight unanimously cleared the white officers of one of the black plaintiff's claims, malicious prosecution — a claim stemming from criminal charges against him that were dismissed. The jurors deadlocked on Mr. Miles' two other claims of false arrest and excessive force.

That outcome's especially significant when this civil trial's burden of proof — easier to meet than a criminal trial's — is factored in.

Neither federal prosecutors nor Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen A. Zappala Jr. found evidence of police misconduct strong enough to try the officers on criminal charges. And now, even with that easier civil burden of proof, a federal civil jury also has decided that the evidence isn't strong enough to rule against them.

The case thus boils down to one side's word against the other's. Though found wanting again, Miles' side has the right to pursue its remaining claims in a second civil trial, as his lawyers have vowed to do. But this partial verdict already has denied him outright vindication.

That verdict must be respected. So must any verdict on Miles' remaining claims. Accepting the legal system's outcome is the key step toward focusing on positive ways for all concerned to move beyond this regrettable, heated controversy.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Editorials

  1. Social Security’s mess
  2. Collaring the EPA: Hold the cigars
  3. Greensburg Tuesday takes
  4. Pittsburgh Tuesday takes
  5. The Thursday wrap
  6. Apple Music & Taylor Swift: A good & timely lesson
  7. McKeesport Tuesday Takes
  8. Alle-Kiski Tuesday takes
  9. Cemetery crisis
  10. Sunday pops