Attorney defends Darrin Manning's future
The Darrin Manning case continues to unfold with Philadelphia police and the defense attorney using evidence to affect the teen's future in the face of felony charges and an upcoming court date.
In the Darrin Manning case, the stakes are rising along with tension between Philadelphia police and Manning's defenders. Those first concerned about the teen's health are now adding another fear—his future.
Which story does evidence support?
On Feb. 19, Darrin Manning's attorney, Lewis Small, called a press conference in the presence of Manning and his mother, principal and peers to defend against Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey's comments on newly discovered evidence in a medical report released last week, as well as call for District Attorney Seth Williams to drop felony charges against Manning.
The police report of Manning's arrest for aggravated assault, resisting arrest and reckless endangerment claimed that Manning struck an officer. His counsel denied this claim, asserting that Manning was struck over the head with handcuffs and patted-down so rigorously that it caused the teen to undergo emergency surgery the following day after hours the night before in police custody.
Last week, Ramsey held a press conference concerning a medical report from the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia where Manning underwent surgery the day after he was stopped and frisked by a Philadelphia police officer. The report stated that doctors performed emergency surgery on what they suspected was a ruptured testicle, but in surgery, found a blood clot.
"The description of the action the officer is alleged to have taken—that it was incredible violent—the information contained in his medical records does not support it," Ramsey told press on Feb. 13.
Ikea Coney, Manning's mother, told press that her son could not play basketball for weeks after surgery and must return once every three months to have his sperm count checked.
The back and forth between Manning's defense and Ramsey is over three sentences written by Dr. Gregory Tasian of Children's Hospital of Philadelphia after the surgery—"[Manning] was involved with an encounter with the police department during which his scrotum was grabbed and he reported acute onset of left testicular pain. An ultrasound demonstrated suspected left testicular rupture so I performed an emergent scrotal exploration. The testicle was not ruptured but there was a thrombosed appendix epididymis, which I removed."
Who is not cooperating?
Earlier this month, Ramsey and Williams said that there was not enough evidence in the case to make conclusions as none of the witnesses would cooperate with the police investigation, including Manning. Last week, Williams announced that a grand jury investigation of the incident on Jan. 7 is underway. Small told press that while he could not comment on the grand jury, his client and peers were cooperating with the district attorney's office.
Meanwhile, activists on the streets and on social media continue to call for Williams to drop all charges against Manning. The case has made international headlines.
Justice for Jordan Davis, Jonathan Ferrell, Marissa Alexander, Trayvon Martin, Renisha Mcbride, Alfred Wright, Darrin Manning, Taj Patterson
— KD Hughes II (@MiereKhenai) February 15, 2014
— Nuala Cabral (@nualacabral) February 5, 2014
What happens in the future?
A Philadelphia chapter of the National Action Network said that they have filed a complaint with the Department of Justice. Small also told press that he had filed a federal complaint, but was not considering filing with internal affairs because he expected the complaint to be dismissed. Small also dismissed the possibility of filing a civil lawsuit for the time being.
Darrin Manning is a 10th grader at Mathematics, Civics and Sciences Charter School described as an honor roll and straight-A student by his principal, Veronica Joyner, who commented on the irony of Manning's ambitions to attend law school at the Feb. 19 press conference—"This is an experience for him."