The prosecutor has more control over life, liberty, and reputation than any other person in America.
The prosecutor has more control over life, liberty, and reputation than any other person in America. His discretion is tremendous. He can have citizens investigated and, if he is that kind of person, he can have this done to the tune of public statements and veiled or unveiled intimations. Or the prosecutor may choose a more subtle course and simply have a citizen’s friends interviewed…. He may dismiss the case before trial, in which case the defense never has a chance to be heard…. If the prosecutor is obliged to choose his cases, it follows that he can choose his defendants….[A] prosecutor stands a fair chance of finding at least a technical violation of some act on the part of almost anyone….It is in this realm—in which the prosecutor picks some person whom he dislikes or desires to embarrass, or selects some group of unpopular persons and then looks for an offense, that the greatest danger of abuse of prosecuting power lies. It is here that law enforcement becomes personal….