• Black Judge Says D.A. Gave “Ridiculous Plea That Only Goes To White Boys”

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    The Pittsburgh Gazzette is reporting on a case of a An Allegheny County judge who rejected a plea deal from a defendant and the District Attorney, given that he saw it as racially biased.

    Judge Joseph Williams

    Common Pleas Judge Joseph K. Williams, who is black, rejected a deal to allow a white defendant — Jeffery McGowan, 24, of Franklin Park — to get three months of probation for an incident in which he is accused of trying to fight with police after a traffic stop.

    “(Assistant District Attorney Brian) Catanzarite for some reason comes up with I think ridiculous pleas whenever it’s a young white guy,” Williams said. “I’m just telling you what my observation is. If this had been a black kid who did the same thing, we wouldn’t be talking about three months’ probation.”

    “Not because he’s white, but because it’s a ridiculous plea that only goes to white boys that come into this court for the same facts, and I’m not going for it,” the judge responded.

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