Two Philly cops arrested in separate murder and child porn cases

Philadelphia Police Department headquarters at 7th and Race streets (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Philadelphia Police Department headquarters at 7th and Race streets (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

A Philadelphia police officer has been arrested on murder charges for allegedly hitting a pedestrian during a possible drag race with another officer in January in Northeast Philadelphia. 

In an especially busy day for police misconduct, a second officer was arrested, a third suspended with intent to dismiss, and a fourth got sent to prison on felony conspiracy charges in unrelated cases. 

In the pedestrian fatality, Officer Adam Soto, 24, a three-year veteran assigned to North Philly’s 24th district, was charged with homicide by vehicle and involuntary manslaughter in the Jan. 31 incident on Cottman Avenue near Algon.

thumbnail Officer Adam Soto2

Soto and another officer, Tony Forest, were off-duty when they allegedly were speeding in separate cars about 11:30 a.m., said Capt. Sekou Kinebrew, a police spokesman. Soto hit Daniel Dimitri, 50, of Rhawnhurst, as he crossed the street. Dimitri died within the hour at a nearby hospital. Investigators determined Soto was traveling at 89 mph when he hit Dimitri, Kinebrew said.

Police Commissioner Richard Ross suspended both Soto and Forest with intent to dismiss, Kinebrew said. Forest, 25, a three-year veteran assigned to Germantown’s 14th district, has not been criminally charged, he added.

A third off-duty officer, assigned to Southwest Philly’s 12th district, was in Forest’s car; he also wasn’t criminally charged, although he has left the force for unrelated reasons, Kinebrew added.

“This is a particularly egregious act, not only because it took place mid-morning on a well-traveled intersection, but because Officer Soto, who once took an oath to serve and protect, is charged with literally running down and killing one of his fellow citizens,” said Kathleen Martin, first assistant district attorney.

In an unrelated case, Officer Emmanuel Folly, 25, a three-year veteran of the force, was arrested for possession and dissemination of child pornography and sexual abuse of children. He surrendered to internal affairs Tuesday after Special Victims Unit (SVU) investigators discovered child pornography on his laptop, police said.

0kiddieporncopx600Emmanuel Folly 25-years-old, and a 3-year- veteran of the department assigned to the 18th District was arrested and charged with  sexual abuse of children, possession of child pornography, sexual abuse of children and dissemination of child pornography.  (Philadelphia Police)

The discovery came after SVU members in March 2016 began using a program to search for people viewing, downloading or sharing child pornography, police said. The search led investigators to a Tioga address where Folly lived with his parents, police said. They got a search warrant in November, seized several computers and sent them to the FBI for forensic analysis, police said.  

Ross also suspended Folly, who has made headlines for his success as a featherweight boxer, for 30 days with intent to dismiss.

And at the Criminal Justice Center, a former homicide detective pled guilty Wednesday to felony and misdemeanor charges in a hindering case. Ron Dove, who helped his girlfriend cover up her ex-husband’s murder and hid her from investigators and then lied to them, was sentenced to 30 days to 23 months in prison on charges of hindering apprehension, conspiracy, unsworn falsification, tampering with evidence and obstruction of the administration of law, according to the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office.

Dove’s conviction “sends a clear message that if you are a police officer and you break the law, you will be investigated and prosecuted for your crimes,” Martin said.

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