A Plea For Justice From The Justice Dept.
In "Capital wrapup: Civil rights" (Washington Outlook, Dec. 27), you write that many attorneys in the Justice Dept.'s Civil Rights Div. have resigned because they were fed up. Actually, 12 attorneys out of 236 left last year, for an uncommonly low turnover rate of 5%--and none of them expressed frustration.
You also state that there has been a holdup in the Mississippi jail investigations. In truth, our investigations into conditions at the jails have uncovered constitutional violations in a record-setting 18 institutions.
James P. Turner
Acting Assistant Attorney General
Civil Rights Div.
Editor's note: The attorneys we talked to did express frustration. Also, the story did not say that the investigations had been put on hold, but that the department has held off filing suits. Although civil settlements are in the works, Justice has yet to file criminal suits.