Supporters of Tomayo McDuffy call on the City to ensure his accuser never “sees” the light of day.
A new book has been opened in the aftermath of the Tomayo McDuffy case and its contents read like a horror story. The main character is an evil genius that can turn the lives of her neighbors upside down with one move: a phone call to the police.
“The nightmare next door,” replies Mr. Edward Lloyd, when asked to provide an appropriate title to headline this chapter of his life.
Mr. Lloyd, along with his business associate, Mr. Greg Brinkley, were the first two men on the case when Mr. Tomayo McDuffy was falsely arrested on attempted murder charges in May of 2013, by Philadelphia police officers who did little-to-no investigation into the claims made by Ms. Maria Colon, Mr. McDuffy’s blind, mentally-ill next door neighbor and accuser.
Upon taking the case as private investigators, Mr. Lloyd says he and Mr. Brinkley traveled to Harrisburg and New York to meet with the attorneys who represented families that were also victimized by Ms. Colon, a person Mr. Lloyd calls a “danger to society.”
Now that the charges have been dropped against Mr. McDuffy, 19, the black male heroes who “believed in Tomayo since day one” are calling for accountability as it relates to the prosecution of Ms. Colon and transparency as it concerns the facts surrounding Tomayo’s story.
“The facts are getting muddled in the media. If I didn’t know any better, I’d think the DA’s office were the heroes,” said Mr. Asa Khalif, President, Racial Unity USA.
Mr. Khalif and I were in the room with Mr. McDuffy a year ago when lawyers presented the teen with an option of a plea deal. Mr. McDuffy refused it, replying “I’m innocent.”
Mr. Khalif is outraged at the Office of the District Attorney and questioned the humanity of its chief executive, Mr. Seth Williams.
“He’s a black man who was willing to send an innocent black kid to jail even though he knew the case was flawed. I don’t know how he, as black man, can sleep at night.”
By just simply dropping the charges, Mr. Khalif asserts that the Office of the District Attorney is getting let off the hook, as they were negligent at best, irresponsible at worse.
“I think Tomayo and his mother should sue all parties involved: the police who lied on the stand and said the back door was kicked in: the DA’s office that refused to acknowledge our evidence… EVERYONE,” interjects Mr. Lloyd, who claims that he presented evidence that would’ve cleared Mr. McDuffy soon after the arrest, but it was ignored by Assistant District Attorney Melissa Francis, who was the original prosecutor on the case. “This woman (Maria Colon) has three vehicles, one of which is a 2011 Hummer.
According to Mr. Lloyd, Ms. Colon is back in the Holmesburg section of Philadelphia, on Marple Street even, just feet away from where story first began.
While he doesn’t necessarily want to see her in jail, Mr. Lloyd recommends Ms. Colon be housed in a mental health facility where she can be monitored around the clock.
“If she’s left alone, she can do this again,” he says, repeating that “Ms. Colon is a danger to society.”
Mr. Khalif seconded that motion: “If I lived next to her I would be in constant fear that she could turn my life upside down.”
Beyond Ms. Colon, Mr. Khalif and Mr. Lloyd, who was speaking for Mr. Brinkley, said their fight is no longer for Mr. McDuffy, but for all the innocent young black men who are sitting in prison for crimes they didn’t commit, but were bullied by the system into taking a plea deal.
“The bigger movement is to expose Seth Williams and to highlight the injustices stemming from his office,” says Mr. Lloyd.
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