When Kerry Healey used Ben LaGuer as a reason to keep Deval Patrick from office she unexpectedly opened up a huge can of worms for herself. Ben LaGuer seems to be an innocent man that was put behind bars through a series of gross assumptions, poor investigative efforts, mismanagement of evidence, and a tone of racial prejudice that extends all the way to the jury itself. Let's review a few facts that we know:
-Ben LaGuer has five eyewitnesses of his location at the time of the attack that were never called to testify of his behalf.
-Fingerprints that do not match his were known about since days after the crime and were suppressed from evidence until 2001.
-A known rapist with a history of mental illness lived in the same building as LaGuer.
-This rapist matched the description of LaGuer.
-The victim describes how the attacker said he came from Worcester, as did this same person who matches LaGuer's description and has this violent history.
-None of the physical evidence linked LaGuer to the crime scene.
-DNA collection was as much a fiasco as the rest of this case, and experts call DNA evidence inconclusive.
-"I frankly do not understand why you and your colleagues have been refused information by the Massachusetts State Police Crime Lab, the Clerk of Courts in Worcester, and the Worcester District Attorney. There is, in my opinion, ample reason for a full inquiry into this case, and I hope that the Supreme Judicial Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts will agree." ~DNA expert Professor Daniel Hartl, Harvard University.
-It seems that the only evidence that links Ben LaGuer to this crime is the victim's ability to identify him. She was given a police photo line up while still in her hospital bed that included Ben LaGuer, who was her neighbor, and simply asked, "Do you recognize any of these men?" The man who's name I have withheld and a true suspect was not in the line up. As it turns out the daughter of the victim admits she had schizophrenia, yet another point that was never argued at his trial.
-1985 (Wednesday September 18) In court, Carignan (the investigating officer) admits to destroying his original extemporaneous investigative notes, substituting them with police reports authored weeks after LaGuer's arrest.
-1991 (November) LaGuer receives information that the rapist he had suspected was the perpetrator of this crime all along allegedly twice told a local bartender that he committed the crime for which LaGuer stands convicted.
-The fingerprint evidence from the telephone is now missing.
This case could well turn out to be greatest injustice of the Massachusetts Justice system in the twenty-first century, and I find it hard to believe and impossible to excuse that someone of Kerry Healey's education in criminology can overlook all these facts to make Ben LaGuer's case her sword against Deval Patrick. It is not Deval Patrick who should be ashamed, it is Kerry Healey. It is my personal opinion that Kerry Healey not only has no place being our governor, she should never be in any leadership role again.
Oddly enough the SJC Appellate Court case has been pushed back yet again... until right after elections.