HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania House Republican lawmakers on Wednesday announced the introduction of Articles of Impeachment against Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner.
The Articles of Impeachment cite, as misbehavior in office, Krasner’s mismanagement of the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office and his soft-on-crime policies as having a direct and proximate negative impact on the crime and violence crisis gripping Philadelphia, which is a dereliction of his obligation to the people of Philadelphia and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
In addition, the Articles of Impeachment charge Krasner with repeated defiance of the Select Committee on Restoring Law and Order as additional misbehavior in office.
“We must do something to free the people of Philadelphia from the crime and violence crisis that has destroyed lives and property and made Philadelphians prisoners of fear,” said Pennsylvania House Majority Leader Kerry Benninghoff (R-Centre/Mifflin). “We will do the right thing where Larry Krasner has not. We are here to do everything we can to effectuate positive change in the city of Philadelphia in the hopes that someone will take over that is actually interested in putting violent criminals where they belong: In Jail.”
Rep. Martina White (R-Philadelphia) is the prime sponsor of the Articles of Impeachment announced Wednesday.
“Larry Krasner is the top law enforcement official who is supposed to be representing the interests of our Commonwealth in Philadelphia criminal cases,” White said. “His dereliction of duty and despicable behavior is unacceptable and will not be tolerated.”
As a member of the House Select Committee on Restoring Law and Order, which was charged by a bipartisan majority of the House with investigating the causes of and possible solutions to the crisis of crime and violence in Philadelphia, Rep. Torren Ecker (R-Adams/Cumberland) argued impeachment is a necessary step.
“From the beginning of this process, we have heard devastating stories from victims of crime, businesses who are closing because they do not feel safe, and victims who have been revictimized by a district attorney’s office unwilling to help them when they would rather help criminals,” Ecker said.
“The mismanagement of his office and the policies he has implemented as district attorney have directly and proximately led to District Attorney Krasner being derelict in his responsibility to the people of Philadelphia and the people of Pennsylvania who he represents as district attorney. That is misbehavior in office, for which he should be impeached.”
Rep. Tim O’Neal (R-Washington) cited the effect of Krasner’s policies and his continued defiance of the Select Committee as his reasons for supporting the Articles of Impeachment.
“In the months since the investigation into his office started, DA Krasner has done everything he can to obstruct the investigation by the General Assembly, defy the Select Committee, and use the resources of his office to distract from the devastation his policies have caused,” he said. “By defying the Select Committee, he has defied the will of the House; by his policies contributing to the crime and violence crisis, he has been derelict in his responsibility to the people of Philadelphia and the people of Pennsylvania. It is time he be impeached and I am glad we are taking this step today.”
As a former attorney working closely with prosecutors, Rep. Josh Kail (R-Beaver/Washington) noted the mismanagement of the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office by District Attorney Krasner has left Philadelphia prosecutors unable to handle the crime and violence crisis in the city.
“Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner has run the DA’s office into the ground,” Kail said. “With the lack of experience, coupled with a radical criminal justice philosophy stemming from the top, no wonder violent and dangerous criminals remain on the streets. The mismanagement of his office has clearly been a direct and proximate cause of the crime crisis in Philadelphia and led to a dereliction of his obligation to the people of the City of Philadelphia and Pennsylvania.”
The Articles of Impeachment were introduced as House Resolution 240, and were referred to the House Judiciary Committee Wednesday morning.