Anti-Migrant Hate: September 2009 Archives
(Sign the petition demanding justice for Julio and Denis here.)
Julio Maldonado and his cousin Denis Calderon were victims of a bias attack in
South Northeast Philadelphia in 1996. Denis's family was the first Latino family to live in the neighborhood. Tragically, one of the attackers, Christian Saladino, fell into a coma and later died. Police assumed that he had been struck in the head by Julio , acting in self-defense as a result of a fight. However, later medical evidence showed conclusively that Christian had not sustained any outer injury that could have led to his physical reaction. He did, however, suffer from a rare preexisting blood clotting condition. It is clear from the medical evidence that it was physically impossible for Julio to have put Christian Saladino into a coma.
But due to the one-sided investigation by police and the biased prosecution by Seth Williams, now the nominee for District Attorney of Philadelphia, Julio and Denis were convicted of assault. After Christian Saladino passed away, Williams brought murder charges. Once the medical evidence came to light in the murder trial, the jury acquitted Julio and Denis of murder. Then the original trial judge who convicted Julio and Denis of assault, Judge Gregory Smith, vacated his own verdict and called for a retrial.