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Reported police cover-up sparks prosecutors' probe

PHILADELPHIA — Prosecutors say they will investigate a report that a top homicide detective crashed his police car after a night of drinking in 1998 and then allowed a subordinate to cover up the accident.

"The revelations in the press are very disturbing to me," Prosecutor Lynne M. Abraham said after the Philadelphia Inquirer reported the story Sunday. "We're going to take a very hard look at this whole matter."

Abraham said the District Attorney's Office received partial information on the crash several months after it happened. Three days later, on May 7, 1998, the department said the investigation wasn't finished and asked for the file back. Prosecutors never heard back again.

Abraham said she was requesting a copy of the file and an explanation about why the completed report was never forwarded.

Two officers told internal affairs investigators that former police Lt. Joseph DiLacqua covered up an accident caused by Capt. James J. Brady, chief of the Homicide Division, the Inquirer reported.