Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson declared a man who wrongfully served nearly 16 years in prison for killing Rabbi Abraham Pollack in Brooklyn in 1995 “innocent” — a statement that could seal the deal on a lawsuit settlement pending, The Daily News reported Thursday.
During the 2013 campaign, Thompson made the Collins case a central issue in his challenge to incumbent Charles “Joe” Hynes but only referred to him as “likely wrongfully imprisoned.”
That changed this week. “I believe Jabbar Collins is innocent,” Thompson told the Daily News Editorial Board on Tuesday. “A travesty of justice happened in that case.”
“I think there needs to be an accounting in terms of what happened in that case,” he said. “We need to know the truth.”
Collins had his conviction tossed in 2010, leading to a $150 million federal suit that brought to light continued misconduct by the office of former DA Charles Hynes. A key witness, who had incriminated Collins in the 1995 murder, testified at a hearing in 2011 that prosecutor Vecchione threatened to clobber him over the head with a coffee table and throw him in jail if he did not finger Collins for the killing.