Author Archives: mtc9393

Were Gay Men Immune From Prosecution in the 1980s?

A voir dire is the questioning of a persons who may to sit as a juror to determine whether reasons exist that the juror should not sit in judgment of a defendant in a particular case. A judge oversees the selection of a jury. Counsel for the state and the defendants have before them a questionnaire with written answers a juror provided about his or her background. Jurors are asked other questions by the judge. This exercise is supposed to ferret out any biases or prejudices that a person maintains so that those in the jury room will be as free of prejudices as possible and the jury an impartial arbiter of the facts in a case.

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Did Homophobia Play A Role in Bernard F. Baran Jr.’s Conviction?

Attorney Harvey Silverglate who represented Bernard Baran wrote that he was convicted during the “national panic over supposed sexual abuse of preschool children. Baran fell victim to homophobia, hysteria, and arguably prosecutorial misconduct.”  The Boston Globe wrote: “In an atmosphere of homophobia and hysteria, the defendant, an openly gay teenager . . .  didn’t stand a chance.”  (my emphasis in both quotes)

Having been a prosecutor during those days I cannot disagree with Silverglate about the hysteria surrounding preschool child abuse that spread through the land. Some who had preschool children in their care were demonized and prosecuted. Silverglate properly described these events as “modern-day witch hunts” noting that two occurred in Massachusetts. Wikipedia has a list of all of them.

Those who missed it might consider the present reaction of our people to the Ebola problem. There is something in the American character that first showed itself during the Salem witch trial days that lingers on. It is ready to spring out and infect most of us when the temperature is right.

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Will Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Do The Right Thing?

Yesterday, I showed how the op-ed by Harvey Silverglate had to ignore the conclusive evidence that the defense counsel had the opportunity to review video tapes so that he could allege that issue remained open. Silverglate had in his hand a lawyer’s letter stating a transcript shows the unedited video tapes had been made available and that the defense lawyer agreed he had the chance to view them. That letter had also been made available to the Boston Globe which wrote an editorial headlined: “When miscarriages of justice occur, prosecutors must answer for actions.” The Globe in its editorial decided not mention the letter. 

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What’s Going On? The Unwarranted Attack Against Prosecutors

I’m going back again at the Globe editorial demanding “prosecutors must answer for actions.”  Yesterday I mentioned it seemed to be an ill-timed intrusion into the governor’s race since nothing it called for needed immediate attention; also, that it twisted the event into one of prosecutorial misconduct when the real problem involved ineffective assistance of defense counsel.

The Globe conjured up the idea there was a problem when the basis upon which it relied showed there was no problem. It suggested there was prosecutorial misconduct when the evidence points to a prosecutor who did his job. It yelled out that the case was brought on “the skimpiest evidence” when the prosecutor was confronted with evidence from six children between the ages of two and four, three boys and three girls, indicating the defendant, Bernard F. Baran, Jr., molested them. I’ll talk more about the editorial tomorrow.

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Smelling A Rat: A Fake Attack On A Prosecutor and Politician

Incredibly strange, I thought reading an editorial in the Boston Globe. It would become even more so as I did a little research into it.

Bringing the matter up during waning days of a close race for the governorship seemed out-of-place. Nothing was or is urgent. It could have waited. Whether the editorial was published last Saturday or the last Saturday of 2014 would make no difference. It was about events that happened 29 years ago.

Was it a disguised hit piece on one of the candidates? Will it be, like many Globe editorials, the introduction to other articles on the same subject but ones more directly aimed at one of the candidates? Or, will it just be allowed to hang out there as a reminder about what one of them allegedly did in the past hoping that its insinuations will cause voters to turn away from the candidate?

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How Whitey And Stevie Knew The Other Was An FBI Informant

Perhaps because I’ve listened to so many intercepted conversations that I like to imagine dialogue between people. I’ve written how all the authors who have discussed these matters have trouble figuring out how Whitey Bulger and Stevie Flemmi both became informants for FBI Agent John Connolly. The authors of Black Mass suggest Whitey became one and he “blended” Stevie in. They set the first meeting between Connolly and Whitey at Wollaston Beach in Quincy where Connolly convinced Whitey to become an informant to give them information on the Mafia. That never happened, but here’s what did.

It began at Old Harbor Village in South Boston during the month of M….. 1975. John Connolly approached the apartment of Mrs. James Bulger, the mother of Whitey. He knocks on the door.

Mrs. Bulger:       Yes.

Connolly:             Hi Mrs Bulger, is Jimmy in.

Mrs. Bulger:       Yes, Come in. (She leaves and Jimmy appears)

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The FBI Loses To Mafia When It Comes To Credibility

Salemme, a known murderer and former head of the New England Mafia, admitted perjury at the trial of FBI Agent John Connolly coupled with what is called his recantation where he admitted to a fellow inmate that he testified to things that were false at that trial. His perjury and recantation is treated by Judge Selya as no more than a tempest in a teapot.

One of my favorite movies is The Shawshank Redemption.  Banker Andy Dufresne is wrongly convicted of murdering his wife. While in Shawshank prison, another prisoner named Tommy Williams arrives. Tommy reveals that an inmate at another prison claimed responsibility for the murders Andy was convicted of. This proves what Andy has maintained all along that he is innocent. Unfortunately, Tommy is murdered before he can provide evidence of this. There is no doubt to anyone watching the movie that had Tommy not been killed, his testimony would have set Andy free.

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What Obama Said To CDC Chief Frieden About Ebola Threat

This article is posted here:  http://hubgab.com/?p=31

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The Bum’s Rush of FBI Agent John Connolly in Federal Court: Part Three

The most salient part of the evidence FBI Agent John Connolly presented to the Court of Appeals which Judge Selya choose to ignore was the part of the statement by the inmate confidant of Frank Salemme (CS) that Salemme was given information by the prosecutors to refresh his recollection of past event. Keep in mind that Salemme was in in prison from about 1973 to 1988 which would have been most of the time that the relationship between Connolly and Whitey Bulger existed. There was little in there that could refresh his recollection but much that could go to prejudicing him and presenting him the prosecutors view of reality.

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The Bum’s Rush of FBI Agent John Connolly in Federal Court: Part Two

There’s no  doubt Frank Salemme’s testimony played a crucial role in the conviction of FBI Agent John Connolly. Federal Appeals Court Selya’s pretended Frank Salemme’s information given to a fellow prisoner (CS) was nothing more than braggadocio or excessive boastfulness. But when you start your decision as he did, as I indicated previously, with statement indicating a closed mind you have to falsely denigrate facts that strike at the heart of one’s beliefs.

He said of Flemmi’s statement to the CS: Importantly, however, Salemme’s testimony did not occur in a vacuum. Several other witnesses corroborated aspects of it.”  He adds later: “Thus, although Salemme testified to a number of things as to which no other witness had personal knowledge, much of his testimony received substantial circumstantial corroboration.”

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