January 31, 2024

Editorial: The prosecution of Anthony Fox was a baldfaced assault on the Truth

Therese Apel

A meme that circulated social media during Detective Anthony Fox's incarceration.

The reversal of Detective Anthony Fox’s culpable negligence manslaughter conviction is the only thing that has made sense since the witch hunt started.

Since Day One of this thing, some of the authorities involved have asked people to believe things that just aren’t true. Even when evidence was presented to show that their facts were made up, a narrative was pushed with impunity, stopping for nothing.

Read our coverage of the Anthony Fox trial here.

“But the jury…” you say. Well, part of the ruling yesterday is that the jury was given no option to rule that George Robinson’s death was an accident. The judge’s jury instructions were amateurish and problematic at best. It’s hard to believe that a judge would so gravely misunderstand the system she is sworn to uphold.

The shame is all the people that let it happen. The emperor has no clothes.

Where was the outrage for a black man who by all evidence was badly abused by the system? Oh that’s right. He’s not black, he’s BLUE.

My father is a prosecutor, and one thing I knew growing up is that a prosecutor’s job is to fight hard for the truth. If it turns out as the investigation goes forward that someone is not guilty, you cut them loose in the name of justice. Another thing I knew was that judges are to be objective and fair. The positions of judge and prosecutor are sacred and honorable, at least in a former life.

When Fox was convicted, there were letters to the judge speaking of his character not only from friends, coworkers, family members and pastors, but also people he had put in jail. That’s the mark of a good law enforcement officer: When the people you arrest have great respect for you because you treat them with dignity.

It’s no secret. I’ve been covering police and crime in the Jackson area since 2010, and Anthony Fox is my friend. I have ridden with the front lines units of Jackson Police Department, sometimes in Fox’s vehicle, and I have seen him deal with people. Throughout the prosecution when people would question me, I’d quote the movie “Cookie’s Fortune,” which was based in Mississippi.

     Sheriff Lester Boyle (played by Ned Beatty): He’s innocent.
     Eddie “The Expert” Pitts (Matt Malloy): And what makes you so sure of that?
     Lester Boyle: I’ve fished with him.

How did I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that Anthony Fox was innocent from the beginning? Well figuratively, I’ve fished with him. Also, the fact bore out no other reasonable explanation.

There are so many pieces of background in this story of one of Jackson’s bests narcotics officers and the people that sought to take him down, and those facts will eventually come to light.

My friends, I realize that I have an analytical job. I have to look at actual facts devoid of emotions and come to conclusions, and believe me, I did that in this case. I’ve written about plenty of people I knew who were convicted of crimes, and even a couple of good friends. I did not lobby for any of their innocence, regardless of how much I liked them. That’s because facts are facts. These facts did not point to guilt and I believe that it’s possible nobody actually believed they did, not even the prosecution.

I am very sorry for George Robinson’s family. I am sorry that they’ve been used multiple times now as puppets in someone else’s game.

This case was about a blatant disregard not only for facts, but for something much more sacred than facts: the truth. Ignoring truths for a narrative or politics is not only a grave miscarriage of justice but a brutal abuse of a system that was established to protect the innocent.

How dare you.


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