Wednesday, October 04, 2006

On this Whole LaGuere Thing

Because I keep getting asked about LaGuere and what I think about it, I'll write my thoughts on it once and for all.

It's a non-issue.

The Parole Board turned down LaGuere, who returned to the board for a second time in April 2000. Patrick again wrote to the board, urging LaGuere's release. Again, LaGuere was turned down.

A quotation from one of Patrick's letters was removed from LaGuere's website in the last several days, after Patrick issued a statement suggesting he no longer supported the effort to free the convicted rapist. Patrick said he had reviewed the history of the case and concluded that ``justice has been served," in light of a 2002 DNA test that confirmed the prosecution 's case against LaGuere.

So, to keep this straight, here's what happened: Deval wrote to the parole board because the case seemed questionable, something experts across the country agreed with. Deval later wrote another letter a few years later. After that, DNA evidence was released which matched LaGuere - at which point Deval Patrick ceased whatever support was previously there.

Can someone - anyone - tell me what's wrong with that?

If people want to get into exact dates, Deval Patrick certainly mispoke. However, Deval Patrick is going to mess up a date here and a fact there everyday, if only because of the sheer volume of people he talks to. Deval's last letter in support of LaGuere was in 2000, not ten years ago in 1996. However, it still stacks up with everything else Deval said: he stopped supporting LaGuere when new evidence was brought forth that hurt LaGuere's case to say the least.

I don't know how other people's minds work, but here's how mine functions: I remember what I do - not when I do it. I may remember when I did something in relation to another thing - I may remember that I went out last night before I ate dinner - but I couldn't tell you if I went out at six and ate at nine. I'm guessing, as bright as Deval Patrick clearly is, his mind works the same way.

No one's perfect; this is all just a distraction. There are real issues at stake here - education, property tax, renewable energy, jobs... the very future of Massachusetts. Kerry Healey will harp on LaGuere because she'd rather not hear about how the Romney/Healey administration raised fees by hundreds of millions of dollars - all the while taking the "no new taxes" pledge. Instead of squabbling over a convicted criminal, let's get back to issues that matter.


Aaron said...

I agree with most of this, but why did he want LaGuere to be released in the first place? Did he think he was innocent? I know the DNA evidence arrived in 2002, but did Deval think that he was innocent prior to that? If he had some valid reason for thinking that LaGuere was innocent prior to the DNA evidence, I'd like to hear what it was. If not, I'd like to know why on Earth he was trying to get this guy released.

Joe said...

I would question his intent. If the case was questionable as far as justice being served, why say
``He appears well prepared to make a positive re-entry and important contribution to the community of responsible citizens,"
That seems more like something you'd say after the fact he was guilty is admitted but you think he's been rehabilitated, not the kind of thing you say if you think the case was flawed.
Do you have the link to the full text of the letter? Mayhaps it makes more sense in context.

Ryan Adams said...

Aaron, from what I understand,t wasn't about innocence; it was about the facts of the case. Apparently, experts from around the country thought it was deeply flawed. I'm no expert, so I defer to others' judgements on the matter.

Joe, I'm sorry, but I don't.

Needless to say, this is such a trivial matter that I'm not going to worry about it. Heck, just look at what Reed Hillman did - you don't see me blogging about that (there goes your "I would have targetted Reilly" theory, Aaron).

There are important matters going on and this election is about who is going to improve our state. People who buy into this crap - instead of important issues - do so to the detriment of their own best interests... all they'll get is 4 more years of the same-old, same-old. Our state can't afford it, things could just fall apart.

The Twitcher said...

I suppose Deval forgot about that $5,000 check as well? Your spin on this one is very poor Ryan. As is Deval's. That's why this has become such a big issue. The guy just isn't being straight with the public. And is this the quality we want in our Governor?

Ryan Adams said...

My spin?

I don't spin.

I have expectations of Deval and, in this case, he made them.

The fact that he helped pay for the DNA test shows he was putting his money where his mouth was - and it helped ensure justice was being served.

The Twitcher said...

Why didn't he disclose this all up front then? I have expectations that when a candidate is asked a straight question they will give me a straight answer. Instead deval kept changing his story, first 15 years ago he contacted this laguere, then it was 6 years ago, then it was "oh I also contributed FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS to his defense. The spin here is silly and you have only contributed to the silly spin.

Deval should have just said "ya i supported this guy and i even paid 5k to clear his name." but he didn't. he just backpeddled furiously. thems the facts. and they are indisputable.

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