On Wednesday, retired Brooklyn Detective Louis Scarcella testified in court. It was an event, highly anticipated and filled with reporters. Last year, then-Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes announced that his office would review every conviction that involved Scarcella. At a time when wrongful convictions have become the headline story of America's criminal justice system, no other detective has faced such scrutiny. And so in the months since, Scarcella emerged as the face of wrongful convictions. Wednesday was the first time, since Hynes's announcement, that Scarcella has had to answer questions about his police work under oath.
Alan Zale Louis Scarcella, right, leading David Ranta out of the 90th Precinct in August 1990. Ranta was convicted in May 1991 despite no physical evidence connecting him to the murder of a Brooklyn rabbi.