Understandably, the members of the Massachusetts Parole Board are on the receiving end of a lot of anger, even rage, in the wake of the December 26 2010 murder of Woburn police officer John B. Maguire by a freed convict.
By all official accounts, investigators say Domenic Cinelli fatally shot John Maquire during a robbery attempt. Those same officials describe Cinelli as a career criminal, who never should have been released by the Parole Board. Police chiefs from across Massachusetts, together with several state senators, ratcheted up the pressure on the state Parole Board yesterday, to both account for their November 2008 decision to release the career criminal who murdered Maguire, Domenic Cinelli, as well as call a halt to all parole hearings until a formal investigation reveals why and how Cinelli was released. About 75 police chiefs and several state senators – interestingly, from both sides of the aisle, joined in loudly condemning the Board’s actions in releasing Cinelli, and in calling for a halt to all future release hearings until the official investigation ordered by Governor Deval Patrick is completed.
These reactions from both the general public, public safety officials and elected politicians, is very, very understandable. I say this as someone who makes his living, in part, as a Boston criminal defense lawyer. Who can blame anyone for feeling this way?