Tone-deaf comments by Philadelphia’s progressive DA Larry Krasner sparked a firestorm of criticism.
“We don’t have a crisis of lawlessness, we don’t have a crisis of crime, we don’t have a crisis of violence, and that is a category that includes gun violence. It’s important that we don’t let this become mushy and bleed into the notion that there is some kind of big spike in crime,” Krasner said during a Monday press conference.
There were 523 homicides in Philly as of December 7, breaking a record set in 1990 and up 13 percent over last year.
“In 2021, Philadelphia has set an all-time record for homicides,” former Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan told Delaware Valley Journal. “Claiming the city is not in the middle of a crime spike is reckless and willful blindness. Krasner has anointed himself as the emperor of progressive prosecutors. When it comes to violent crime in Philadelphia, it is time for the city to notice that the emperor wears no clothes.”
Another experienced prosecutor agreed.
“The rapidly rising rate of violent crime in Philadelphia is a direct result of District Attorney Larry Krasner’s soft-on-crime policies, which I fought against every day as U.S. Attorney,” said Bill McSwain, a Republican who is running for governor. “Under Krasner’s leadership, the growing threat of ever-emboldened criminals has left citizens afraid to even leave their homes. For Krasner to deny this growing culture of lawlessness is a slap in the face to every law-abiding Philadelphian. It is time for a leader who will put citizen safety first.”
On Wednesday, the Philadelphia Fraternal Order of Police President John McNesby told Fox News that Krasner, who was reelected in November, has “been getting a free ride for the last couple of years. He blames everybody but his own self. He’s lost 130 employees in that office just since last January.
“A couple of years ago, he was blaming Trump for all the problems. Last year, it was the pandemic and COVID. Now it’s the media. He does everything possible in his power to let people out of jail, to cut sweetheart deals, and now the city’s suffering. He’s ignorant. He’s arrogant. He’s just been doing what he wants to do and now the people are starting to wake up and starting to call him out.”
Even his fellow Democrats are now criticizing Krasner.
Former Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter, who served two terms, wrote an editorial in The Philadelphia Inquirer castigating Krasner, saying, “As of Monday night, 521 people, souls, spirits have been vanquished, eliminated, murdered in our City of Brotherly Love and Sisterly Affection, the most since 1960. I have to wonder what kind of messed up world of White wokeness Krasner is living in to have so little regard for human lives lost, many of them Black and Brown, while he advances his own national profile as a progressive district attorney.”
And Democratic state Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta called on Mayor Jim Kenney and Gov. Tom Wolf to do more to stop the violence in the city, according to The Philadelphia Tribune. Kenyatta is running for the U.S. Senate.
“At the state level, we saw the governor do something similar as it related to the opioid epidemic,” Kenyatta said. “What that did was bring together FEMA, the Department of Human Services, the Department of Health to make sure that folks are working together to stem the crisis. We need to do that right now.”
According to McNesby, the numbers tell the story.
The numbers don’t lie.
“Ag (aggravated) assaults are up. Shootings are up. We’ve had over 2,200 shootings this year. Over 500 homicides. I don’t know where he’s saying Philly is not a violent city. It’s safe to come there. It’s not. So wake up,” said McNesby.
“I think that’s what these Democratic-controlled cities with the progressive D.A.s,” said McNesby. Shoplifters “know nothing’s going to happen, they’re not going to be held accountable. Why not roll the dice and see what you walk out with. Because they know even if they do get caught, they’re likely not to be prosecuted and even if they are, it’s likely they’re going to get nothing but a slap on the wrist. So why not roll the dice?”
The impact is also being felt among the men and women in blue.
“We’re down 600 to 700 officers where people are just resigning, retiring,” said McNesby. “And they’re going to work every day. They’re still taking the guns off the street. They’re still arresting people. And yet they’re being second-guessed by people that are sitting in leadership positions in the City of Philadelphia.”