By all accounts, former NYPD detective, Louis Scarcella, is a crooked cop who framed innocent people. And, even after the recent case of John Bunn who was finally freed 17 years after being framed by Scarcella, he still maintains his innocence.
“I’ve done absolutely nothing wrong. I stand by my cases a hundred percent,” Scarcella, who retired in 1999, said outside his Staten Island home, reports the New York Daily News.
The difference is now Scarcella’s cases are falling apart.
Evidence showed that Bunn and another man were framed for the killing of Rolando Neischer by the former New York City detective. Bunn was only 14-years-old when he was convicted and jailed, reports NY Daily News.
Scarcella, was on the force for nearly three decades, stationed in Brooklyn. Over the years, he developed an impressive record of nabbing killers and doing whatever it took to get suspects to talk. As Sean Flynn reported in GQ magazine, the heavily decorated Scarcella received Chief of Detectives’ Award for Outstanding Police Investigation for the cases he purportedly solved.
Well-respected and even legendary, Scarcella investigated 241 murders — many of them high-profile and in the media — and even served as an expert, appearing on the Dr. Phil show, in 2007 to discuss false confessions from the police perspective. As was reported in The Village Voice, Scarcella told Dr. Phil that he never had a confession that did not corroborate and turned out to be false.
“I will do whatever I have to do within the law to get a confession or to get someone to cooperate with me.”
It was later learned that Scarcella had in fact used phony witnesses to get the job done, and even beating some suspects into false confessions. Hundreds of his cases have been under review and have led to several convictions being overturned, the NY Daily News reports.
Bunn was convicted in an August 1991 killing, largely based on evidence planted by Scarcella. He lawyers always maintained that he was framed.
“There were problems with this case that were very obvious,” said defense lawyer Glenn Garber. “There was no probable cause to make an arrest.”
Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Shawn’Dya Simpson, who overturned the conviction based on the evidence, was overwhelmed with emotion herself because of the circumstances that led to Bunn being jailed at such a young age.
“I am more than emotional about this day,” said Simpson. “You were 14 at the time. This shouldn’t have ever happened.”
“The revelation of Detective Scarcella’s malfeasance in fabricating false-identification evidence gravely undermines the evidence that convicted the defendants in this case,” Simpson wrote in her decision.
Bunn cried and was overcome with emotions.
While Bunn can’t get his 17 years back, Scarcella walks away unscathed with this pension still intact.
“I have a great life,” Scarcella boasted.
“My dad was a homicide detective. My brother was on the job for 26 years. My daughter’s a district attorney. This job was my life.”