Before Ken Thompson decided to run for Kings County District Attorney, he was a successful private lawyer. It was reported that an emergency appendectomy he had some years ago inspired him to change his career course and become a public servant. He wanted to make the streets of Brooklyn safer. Thompson took office in 2014, which was somewhat of a full-circle, as early in his career he was a federal prosecutor in Brooklyn.
Assemblyman Joseph Lentol stated, “Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson was an exemplary steward of our criminal justice system. He led the way with progressive policies that not only improved the system, but also aimed to rebuild the trust between police and community relations. This could be seen in his investigations of wrongful convictions and suspension of prosecuting low level marijuana arrests. Ken will surely be missed, but he left a mark on Brooklyn that will never be forgotten. My prayers go out to his family and his staff.”
Thompson made strides to protect tenants of affordable housing when he indicted Joel and Amram Israel, who were accused of using construction and other methods to intimidate their tenants to leave so they could flip the property to the market rate. “Rent-stabilized apartments are designed to protect tenants and cannot be turned into market-value apartments through intimidation and fraud. It’s against the law and we will investigate and vigorously prosecute those who harass and prey on innocent tenants in Brooklyn.” The case against the Israel brothers goes to trial this month.
When Ken Thompson stepped down due to his battle with colorectal cancer, he appointed his second in command, Eric Gonzalez as his replacement. After Thompson’s death, Governor Cuomo confirmed Gonzalez would remain acting District Attorney to continue Thompson’s work of treating “everyone and every case fairly and with utmost integrity” without interruption or delay.