Prosecutors cancel warrant for lawmaker on primary eve, saying protective order hadn't been in place

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A warrant for charges that a Democratic state representative from Philadelphia violated a protective order was withdrawn Monday — a day before he faces a contested primary — because police and prosecutors said they determined no such active protective order had been in place.

District Attorney Larry Krasner said a detective had sought the warrant against Rep. Kevin Boyle with information that was not false or fake but had “a piece missing.”

“I did not want to let this day go by having been able to confirm this morning that the protection order was no longer in effect as of the dates in question. I didn’t want this date to go by without correcting that fact,” Krasner said.

A phone message seeking comment was left for an attorney who a former Boyle defense attorney indicated currently represents Boyle. Boyle did not respond to a text seeking comment.

Krasner said he had information regarding the mistake he was not able or willing to disclose. He said he plans to assess in the near future whether “there might be next steps.”

Boyle was stripped of a committee chairmanship and Capitol access privileges in February after a videotaped episode at a Montgomery County bar where he appeared intoxicated.

In response to Boyle voting remotely last week amid reports about the now-canceled warrant, Pennsylvania House Democratic leaders proposed a process to determine whether state representatives are “incapacitated” and should be sanctioned or expelled.

The resolution would establish a new group consisting of five House leaders to determine if a representative is impaired physically or mentally so that they are unable to perform their duties.

Boyle was charged three years ago with harassment and violation of a protection from abuse order after showing up at his wife’s house, charges that were subsequently dropped. His attorney at the time described it as a “domestic issue” that did not involve allegations of violence. Boyle later said he was treated at a mental health facility.

Boyle, the brother of U.S. Rep. Brendan Boyle, D-Philadelphia, faces a primary opponent on Tuesday in a run for an eighth term.

Kevin Boyle and fellow House Democrats hold a precarious majority in the 203-member House, currently with a 102 members. A special election next week for the one vacant seat in a Republican-leaning district will also be held with the primary on Tuesday.

The Associated Press