Ken Thompson remembered as 'dedicated' public servant determined to bring justice for all

Darla Miles Image
Monday, October 10, 2016
Brooklyn DA Ken Thompson remembered after his fatal bout with cancer
Darla Miles sits down with one of the 10 exonerees from Thompson's efforts

NEW YORK (WABC) -- Ken Thompson became Brooklyn's first black district attorney when he was elected 3 years ago. On Monday, those who worked with and knew Ken Thompson are remembering him as a dedicated public servant determined to bring justice for all.

Thompson died suddenly on Sunday after a brief battle with cancer. He was just 50 years old.

One of the highlights and hallmarks of Thompson's career, for the people he freed, he was his last hope.

"He said to me 'keep your head up high' - I knew exactly what he meant by that," said David McCallum.

That was the first time McCallum met Thompson.

"To actually be in that very office that I wrote on a regular baisis, and to meet this guy and his wife, that was cool," McCallum adds.

After more than 600 letters and 29 years in prison, McCallum was finally being treated with dignity and respect.

"Why would he have to introduce his wife to me, or his children? He didn't have to, but the fact that he did, that says a lot about him as opposed to anything about me," he said.

In just two and a half years, Thompson's conviction review freed 21 people. David McCallum and Willie Stuckey, Jr. - exonorees numbers 9 and 10. Sadly, Stuckey died before his name was cleared.