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The Boss: Robert Morgenthau and His New York

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The Boss: Robert Morgenthau and His New York

A history podcast from Lucas Gimbel

For half a century — from 1961 until 2009 — Robert M. Morgenthau, affectionately named “the Boss” by colleagues and underlings, dominated New York justice. Starting as Kennedy’s choice for US Attorney for the SDNY, finishing as the city’s longest-ever-serving District Attorney, Morgenthau died last July, prompting the New York Times to call him the city’s “public avenger” in his obituary. Morgenthau’s career history includes over 3.5 million cases, including the high profile Central Park Five, John Lennon’s killer, the “preppy” killer, Robert Chambers, and the Subway Vigilante. Yet Morgenthau’s career seems a rare blip in the New York political machine: at every turn, integrity outweighed ambition. Compared to the modern political realm, one seemingly mired in deceit and incivility, Morgenthau’s breed seems even rarer. How did such a principled man bring fair justice to 20th century New York — a city sticken by corruption, crime, and injustice? Over the next few weeks, this podcast will find out.

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