A new phrase has been added to my vocabulary: nolle prosequi, Latin for “unwilling to pursue.”
The District Attorney said nolle prosequi about David Bonds’ case last week. Bonds was accused of killing Dinerral Shavers. I never knew Dinerral, but I was disturbed by news of his murder, which I wrote about in December.
The official line is that the prosecution couldn’t make their case because the young witness is being prevented from testifying by her mother. But it’s surely more complicated than that. Ken Foster says “no one felt it was their responsibility to get a conviction.”
That got me thinking about L— H—’s case. L— was accused of killing a young boy near our home in 2004. I wrote about his case in February. Yesterday I checked Docket Master, and sure enough, nolle prosequi.
>DEFENDANT, L— H— APPEARED WITHOUT COUNSEL FOR PRE-TRIAL CONFERENCE
>FOR COUNT 1 RS 14 30 FIRST DEGREE MURDER NOLLE PROSEQUI.
>CASE CLOSED, THIS DEFENDANT.
After three years in prison, L— has been released into a city that’s been devastated by disaster. How strange that must be. The murder rate in New Orleans is higher than when L— went into prison. In fact, it’s higher than anywhere else in this nation. Much higher.
Postscript: Natasha Robin of Fox 8 interviewed me yesterday about a recent string of violent incidents. I told her I am not an expert on violent crime, but she said she wanted to get “the voice of the people.” They shot some footage of me distributing flyers for a community BBQ. I wasn’t able to catch the news so I don’t know how it played.