The lead investigator in the Philadelphia sting operation that Attorney General Kathleen Kane shut down – in part because of possible racial targeting – this week came forward to deny he was ordered to target African-American legislators.
“No one would, again, ever suggest asking, ordering me to target members of my own race or any race. It just would not happen," the investigator, who now works for Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams, told Fox 29.
In a statement, Kane said the investigator “indicated that he was instructed by his supervising OAG Attorney to focus only on members of the General Assembly's Black Caucus and that when he had information of potentially illegal acts by white members of the General Assembly he was specifically told not to pursue it.”
There are 23 members of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, most of whom represent the Philadelphia area. It’s entirely possible the investigator was instructed to focus on some or all of these members by name, without anyone mentioning their ethnicity or their membership in the Black Caucus. It may not have registered with the investigator that all of the targets were people of color.
All but one, that is.
"There was several members of both the House and the Senate, Caucasian as well as African-American, who requested a number of things,” the investigator told Fox 29.
He doesn’t mention how many of the targets were Caucasian or who they were (And Fox 29 didn’t ask. Tsk, tsk, Fox 29). Of 113 recording sessions conducted throughout the sting, there are only two white “targets,” one of whom “is on tape merely because he happens to be in a room with two black targets.”
Apparently, the sole white target of the sting was a legislator who had enraged then-Attorney General Tom Corbett in 2010 with his criticism of Corbett’s legislative investigation as politically motivated.