Former Atlanta-area prosecutor Rand Csehy was arrested last week on drug charges. He formerly prosecuted people accused of the same sort of drug crimes. The Atlanta Journal Constitution characterized his fall from grace saying he has gone from prosecuting drug dealers to “joining the enemy.”
Colleagues say they noticed things changing for Csehy in recent years. He worked as senior assistant district attorney in Fulton County from 2002 to 2006, followed by a stint as a defense lawyer.
It isn’t clear if his latest charges will cast a shadow on the cases he previously prosecuted.
Lester Tate, trial attorney and the former president of the State Bar said he believes a review should be done, an examination of past cases. “Tate said the Fulton prosecutor’s office should look to see if someone was wrongfully incarcerated, if evidence was suppressed that could have led to a not guilty verdict or might have pointed at another person,” according to the AJC.
But it seems Csehy’s problems didn’t begin until after he left the County Prosecutor’s office, so it’s unclear how they would have influenced any cases he prosecuted back then.
Ideally, like police officers, prosecutors are held to a high standard. The commonly held belief is that they can’t be trusted to enforce the laws if they themselves aren’t abiding by them. If, for instance, a prosecutor was himself using drugs when prosecuting others accused of drug crimes, could we trust that he would handle the cases with integrity or would his own personal habit color his level of professionalism?
There’s no doubt that a drug problem can influence someone’s decision making habits, their ethics, and their behavior. But in order to establish that a review of Csehy’s cases is necessary, they would have to have evidence that his alleged problem reached back into his years as a practicing attorney.
When someone is accused of drug crimes, they are judged. It doesn’t matter if you are a prosecutor, a police officer, or a plumber. The system is designed to penalize those accused of such offenses. While being in a position of power may seem to positively impact the results of a drug case, this isn’t always true. Even prosecutors can be prosecuted—though it seems rare.
If you are accused of a drug crime, regardless of your position within society, you face serious consequences. We may be able to help. Contact our offices today for a free consultation on your case.