Crime Waves: Lots of Letters, and a Text

As Anthony Marshall awaits sentencing, his lawyers are planning to submit letters from allies including Whoopi Goldberg, Al Roker, and Marshall’s cardiologist to the judge. While the cardiogist’s concerns Mr. Marshall’s ill health, The Times says that most of the 75 or so other letters testify to his character. For example:

Ms. Goldberg wrote that when she moved into her new apartment on the Upper East Side about a decade ago, Mr. Marshall and his wife, Charlene, were the only people in the building who were nice to her. She said that spending time with Mr. Marshall and his mother gave her lessons for her own life.

“I also understand what it must be like for my own daughter to be around my fame,” she wrote. “I am not comparing myself to Mrs. Astor, but I’ve seen how you can be dismissed as not being good enough, or hip enough, and seeing it happen to Tony made me make sure that it didn’t happen to my own daughter.”

Mr. Marshall’s first-degree grand larceny conviction is the only one of the counts against him that carries mandatory prison time, but the judge could give him up to 25 years.

In other epistolary drama, the Daily News reports that mob informant Henry Hill (of Goodfellas fame) has written a letter to the courts on behalf of his lawyer, who is facing 30 years to life for plotting to harm witnesses. Hill has “participated in countless crimes, including murder and drug trafficking, and was kicked out of the witness protection program”; still, he feels his words should carry weight with the legal system.

“I would ask you for all that I have done for the government not to send Bob to jail,” he wrote.

Meanwhile, police officers need to get better at recognizing exploitation and asking the right questions to enforce  sex trafficking laws, says The Times:

Eager to move a case along, the police may arrest someone for promoting prostitution rather than stiffer trafficking charges. With evidence growing stale, it can be hard to upgrade charges later on, the prosecutors said.

“It’s very reminiscent where we were 30 years ago on the domestic violence stuff,” [Westchester DA Janet] DiFiore said. “People just don’t get it yet.”…

“If you’re looking at a frightened immigrant woman in a brothel, it doesn’t take a Ph.D. in political science to know what you’re dealing with,” said Dorchen Leidholdt, legal director for Sanctuary for Families, a Manhattan agency for battered women that is helping the Mexican woman. She runs across many police officers who do not know that a trafficking law exists, she said.

Eliot Spitzer signed New York’s anti-sex-trafficking legislation two years ago, but there have been only 18 arrests and one conviction so far.

And in the Post, Ashley Dupre considers the ethics of hookery.

Having been condemned in the court of public opinion, she demands to know how her activities differed from those of Tiger Woods’ mistresses–“all these girls accepting gifts, money, trips from Tiger in exchange for sex”:

“My case in point,” the call-girl-turned-singer/author/model wrote The Post in a text message yesterday.

The paper recounts similar complaints Dupre has made previously:

In September, she also railed against all the women who passed judgment on her, despite their own mercenary relationships with monied men.

“I’m often referred to as the ‘woman who brought down the governor’ — excuse me, people, I didn’t call the tabloids,” Dupre said then.

Crime Waves: Lots of Letters, and a Text