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Deputy prosecutor fired for errors in handling protective order violation

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The employment of an unnamed St. Joseph County deputy prosecutor has been terminated after deciding not to prosecute a man following his May arrest for violating a protective order. Several days later, that man allegedly stabbed and killed his young daughter.

According to a press release issued by the prosecutor’s office Wednesday, the deputy prosecutor didn’t prosecute Edward Mwaura because the deputy prosecutor’s review of the Protective Order Registry under “Mwaura” revealed an invalid protective order. Mwaura was arrested May 30.

On the morning of June 2, police responded to a 911 call at an apartment complex involving Mwaura and Lucy Munida. She was bleeding from several knife wounds and told police that Mwaura, her ex-husband, was inside the apartment with their 6-year-old daughter.

When police entered the apartment, they saw Mwaura stabbing the girl. Lt. Steven Noonan shot Mwaura and killed him. The girl later died from her injuries.

The deputy prosecutor’s decision to not prosecute the misdemeanor crime of violation of the protective order would have been correct if the protective order was invalid.

However, the deputy prosecutor didn’t examine the Protective Order Registry under the Munida’s last name, which would have shown a valid protective order existed. Mwaura’s last name was misspelled on the valid protective order as “Mwawra.”

The arresting officer indicated in his report that there was a valid protective order but didn’t note the cause number.

“It is the responsibility of prosecutors to seek justice and enforce the laws. This does not end with a cursory review of the evidence,” the release from Prosecutor Michael Dvorak says. “Clearly, Mwaura should have been charged with the misdemeanor crime of ‘Violation of a Protective Order.’ This DPA failed to exercise the thoroughness expected, particularly in crimes with women and children as victims of domestic abuse. Accordingly, this individual is no longer employed with the St. Joseph County Prosecutor’s Office.”

The prosecutor’s office found Noonan and the other officers were justified in using deadly force in shooting Mwaura.

 

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  1. I can understand a 10 yr suspension for drinking and driving and not following the rules,but don't you think the people who compleate their sentences and are trying to be good people of their community,and are on the right path should be able to obtain a drivers license to do as they please.We as a state should encourage good behavior instead of saying well you did all your time but we can't give you a license come on.When is a persons time served than cause from where I'm standing,its still a punishment,when u can't have the freedom to go where ever you want to in car,truck ,motorcycle,maybe their should be better programs for people instead of just throwing them away like daily trash,then expecting them to change because they we in jail or prison for x amount of yrs.Everyone should look around because we all pay each others bills,and keep each other in business..better knowledge equals better community equals better people...just my 2 cents

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  3. I expressed my thought in the title, long as it was. I am shocked that there is ever immunity from accountability for ANY Government agency. That appears to violate every principle in the US Constitution, which exists to limit Government power and to ensure Government accountability. I don't know how many cases of legitimate child abuse exist, but in the few cases in which I knew the people involved, in every example an anonymous caller used DCS as their personal weapon to strike at innocent people over trivial disagreements that had no connection with any facts. Given that the system is vulnerable to abuse, and given the extreme harm any action by DCS causes to families, I would assume any degree of failure to comply with the smallest infraction of personal rights would result in mandatory review. Even one day of parent-child separation in the absence of reasonable cause for a felony arrest should result in severe penalties to those involved in the action. It appears to me, that like all bureaucracies, DCS is prone to interpret every case as legitimate. This is not an accusation against DCS. It is a statement about the nature of bureaucracies, and the need for ADDED scrutiny of all bureaucratic actions. Frankly, I question the constitutionality of bureaucracies in general, because their power is delegated, and therefore unaccountable. No Government action can be unaccountable if we want to avoid its eventual degeneration into irrelevance and lawlessness, and the law of the jungle. Our Constitution is the source of all Government power, and it is the contract that legitimizes all Government power. To the extent that its various protections against intrusion are set aside, so is the power afforded by that contract. Eventually overstepping the limits of power eliminates that power, as a law of nature. Even total tyranny eventually crumbles to nothing.

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