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City Officials React To Philadelphia Police Corruption Indictments

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(credit: CBS) Walt Hunter
Eyewitness News Reporter Walt Hunter is one of the market's ...
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By Walt Hunter

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Mayor Michael Nutter and Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey spoke out at a City Hall press conference condemning six indicted narcotics officers and refuting suggestions that corruption in the department is widespread.

Mayor Nutter vowed he would not allow the alleged actions of “six sick scumbags” to impact the reputations of officers who risk their lives everyday.

“The majority of officers in narcotics are hardworking,not corrupt period,” Ramsey said emphatically.

The six officers, indicted by a federal grand jury Wednesday, are accused of beating and robbing drug suspects, keeping them imprisoned without being charged and, in two instances, dangling them over the balconies of high-rise buildings in efforts to get information.

The Police Commissioner said he was offended by the front page of the Philadelphia Daily News which showed Police Headquarters wrapped in yellow crime scene tape.

“That is a slap in the face to everybody that walks into that building that doesn’t engage in conduct like that,” Ramsey said.

The Daily News declined comment.

Ramsey and Nutter both praised a new police contract, handed down by an arbitration panel, that, for the first time, gives the Police Commissioner authority to rotate veteran officers out of the Narcotics Unit. The contract provision, they believe, an important step in their efforts to fight corruption.

Meanwhile, attorneys for the Krasner Long law firm, who have already filed more than 60 lawsuits involving the indicted officers over the past two years, say they are now getting a spike in phone calls from people claiming they too were victimized. An indication, the attorneys say, that the suspects’ alleged wrongdoing may be more widespread.

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