State of Massachusetts secondary Archives: on Crime


Setti Warren: More parole instead of privatization of prisons

I understand the "People's Platform" legislative proposals noted on the "ORMA Candidate Endorsement Policy" includes the "Justice is Not For Sale Act." That act includes a range of federal issues which I have not had the time to fully research to be able to endorse the federal elements but I would unequivocally oppose privatization of prisons and would veto any effort to introduce private state prisons by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. I also support parole as an appropriate criminal justice tool. Finally, while not addressed by ORMA, I support the policies proposed in Massachusetts as part of the current Criminal Justice legislation proposed by Democrats in the legislature and would welcome a chance to discuss them in detail.
Source: ORMA questionnaire on 2018 Massachusetts governor race Dec 20, 2017

Jay Gonzalez: Treat underlying conditions that contribute to crime

Nothing predicts a person's future involvement with the criminal justice system as strongly as spending their first day in jail. To make our communities safer, we need criminal justice reform from the front end to the back end. We need to do everything we can to prevent crime. We need to invest in education and housing and shared economic growth, giving even our most at-risk residents healthy and productive pathways.

When crime does occur, we need to deal with it effectively, swiftly and fairly. We need to treat the underlying conditions that contribute to crime, especially mental illness and addiction. We need to give all parts of the system, including police, prosecutors, public defenders, and corrections systems, a wider range of tools and options to tailor punishment and rehabilitation to the particular facts of a case and needs of the defendant. We need to expand in-prison and post-release programs to stop the cycle of recidivism and reincarceration.

Source: 2018 Massachusetts gubernatorial campaign website jay4ma.com Dec 12, 2017

Jay Gonzalez: Over-incarceration has terrible costs for society

Overincarceration is terribly expensive for taxpayers--over $53,000 per inmate per year in state prison. Corrections spending per inmate in Massachusetts is rising faster than other areas of the budget. Overcrowding in our jails crowds out other important investments Massachusetts needs to make in our Commonwealth.

Overincarceration has terrible costs for individuals, families and communities as well. Former inmates earn 40% less each year than they would have earned had they not been incarcerated.

The overincarceration problem starts even before a defendant goes to trial. Unlike federal and many state courts, Massachusetts does not use a validated risk assessment process to make evidence-based bail decisions. Pre-trial detainees in Massachusetts are incarcerated on average nearly 60 days before release, compared to a national median length for a felony defendant of 45 days.

Source: 2018 Massachusetts gubernatorial campaign website jay4ma.com Dec 12, 2017

John Kingston: Reduce imprisonment; expand rehabilitation

I favor efforts to reduce the rate of imprisonment, especially for non-violent crimes. We have to heal the distrust and divide between the police and our communities. And we've locked up far too many for far too long, and they are released into a society ill-prepared for their return. If we don't invest in education, mental health services, and job opportunities for those who need our help, then it's an invitation to social disaster for all of us.
Source: 2018 Massachusetts Senatorial website JohnKingston.com Oct 15, 2017

Jay Gonzalez: End mandatory minimum sentencing

A well-functioning criminal justice system should be grounded in evidence and science, operating on fact rather than fear and treating all who encounter it equitably, without regard to race or income. My comprehensive plan for criminal justice reform includes updating our approach to juvenile & young offenders; reversing the trend of over-incarceration; making incarceration more productive & expanding programming; and giving victims and ex-offenders the services and support to succeed.
Source: 2018 Massachusetts Gubernatorial website Jay4MA.com Sep 15, 2017

Setti Warren: Opposes federalization of police

On what he learned after having rocks thrown at him as a child in Newton: "When I think about what's happening in our country today, what's happening in the commonwealth, and the divisions that are in place right now politically with the presidential election that's occurred, I think about the fact that we've got to pushback against these policies from the Trump administration that are divisive. The Muslim Ban. The federalization of police officers. We've got to pushback against that and I have. And cuts to investments to people of moderate income. At the same time there are people who voted for President Trump that didn't vote for him for those reasons. We've got to reach out of those folks if we are going to deal with the issue of our time which I believe is economic inequality."
Source: WBUR.org on 2018 Massachusetts gubernatorial race Jun 12, 2017

Charlie Baker: Seek death penalty for Boston Marathon bomber

All five Democratic candidates for governor say Dzhokhar Tsarnaev shouldn't face the death penalty for his alleged role in the Boston Marathon bombing. Federal prosecutors last week announced they would seek the penalty against the 20-year-old Tsarnaev, accusing him of betraying his adopted country by ruthlessly carrying out a terrorist attack calculated to cause maximum carnage.

During a video debate Wednesday on The Boston Globe's website, Boston.com, they were asked: "should Dzhokhar Tsarnaev face the death penalty?" All five--Donald Berwick, Martha Coakley, Joseph Avellone, Juliette Kayyem and Steve Grossman--answered "no."

Republican candidate for governor Charlie Baker said Tuesday that he supports the decision to seek the death penalty against Tsarnaev. The question has put some death penalty opponents in an awkward position given the high-profile nature of the crime.

Source: WCVB-TV on 2014 Massachusetts Gubernatorial debate Feb 5, 2014

Don Berwick: No death penalty for Boston Marathon bomber

All five Democratic candidates for governor say Dzhokhar Tsarnaev shouldn't face the death penalty for his alleged role in the Boston Marathon bombing. Federal prosecutors last week announced they would seek the penalty against the 20-year-old Tsarnaev, accusing him of betraying his adopted country by ruthlessly carrying out a terrorist attack calculated to cause maximum carnage.

During a video debate Wednesday on The Boston Globe's website, Boston.com, they were asked: "should Dzhokhar Tsarnaev face the death penalty?" All five--Donald Berwick, Martha Coakley, Joseph Avellone, Juliette Kayyem and Steve Grossman--answered "no."

Republican candidate for governor Charlie Baker said Tuesday that he supports the decision to seek the death penalty against Tsarnaev. The question has put some death penalty opponents in an awkward position given the high-profile nature of the crime.

Source: WCVB-TV on 2014 Massachusetts Gubernatorial debate Feb 5, 2014

Steve Grossman: No death penalty for Boston Marathon bomber

All five Democratic candidates for governor say Dzhokhar Tsarnaev shouldn't face the death penalty for his alleged role in the Boston Marathon bombing. Federal prosecutors last week announced they would seek the penalty against the 20-year-old Tsarnaev, accusing him of betraying his adopted country by ruthlessly carrying out a terrorist attack calculated to cause maximum carnage.

During a video debate Wednesday on The Boston Globe's website, Boston.com, they were asked: "should Dzhokhar Tsarnaev face the death penalty?" All five--Donald Berwick, Martha Coakley, Joseph Avellone, Juliette Kayyem and Steve Grossman--answered "no."

Republican candidate for governor Charlie Baker said Tuesday that he supports the decision to seek the death penalty against Tsarnaev. The question has put some death penalty opponents in an awkward position given the high-profile nature of the crime.

Source: WCVB-TV on 2014 Massachusetts Gubernatorial debate Feb 5, 2014

Deval Patrick: Marathon bomber will die in prison, one way or another

Massachusetts Democrats, who also personally oppose the death penalty, straggled into line behind Attorney General Eric Holder's decision to seek the death penalty against the so-called Marathon bomber because of the targeting of an iconic event; Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

"One way or another, based on the evidence, Tsarnaev will die in prison," declared Gov. Deval Patrick. "The best we can do is remind each other that we are a stronger Commonwealth than ever and that nothing can break that spirit."

There's a Democrat in the White House, and Massachusetts Democrats don't want to cross him or his AG. There's also the posturing aspect of Holder's decision: seeking the death penalty increases the government's leverage to get a guilty verdict in return for life without parole. And to Massachusetts politicians, "Boston Strong" has come to mean looking tough to the nation on terrorism, not "squishy on crime."

Source: Boston Globe OpEd on 2014 Massachusetts gubernatorial race Jan 31, 2014

Martha Coakley: Supports seeking federal death penalty for Marathon Bomber

Massachusetts Democrats, who also personally oppose the death penalty, straggled into line behind Attorney General Eric Holder's decision to seek the death penalty against the so-called Marathon bomber because of the targeting of an iconic event; Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

Martha Coakley, who is running for governor and is also supposedly against the death penalty, said she is sure "that after very thoughtful consideration, Attorney General Holder has made this decision based upon the facts of this case and applicable federal law." Candidates Juliette Kayyem &Don Berwick similarly hedged.

There's a Democrat in the White House, and Massachusetts Democrats don't want to cross him or his AG. There's also the posturing aspect of Holder's decision: seeking the death penalty increases the government's leverage to get a guilty verdict in return for life without parole. And to Massachusetts politicians, "Boston Strong" has come to mean looking tough to the nation on terrorism, not "squishy on crime."

Source: Boston Globe OpEd on 2014 Massachusetts gubernatorial race Jan 31, 2014

Charlie Baker: Hold accountable those responsible for state drug lab crisis

Those running against Attorney General Martha Coakley say a proposed sentence for rogue state drug lab chemist Annie Dookhan isn't harsh enough. Prosecutors urged a judge to sentence Dookhan to up to seven years in prison if she pleads guilty in a drug-testing lab scandal that jeopardized thousands of criminal convictions and cost the state millions. Dookhan is charged with tampering with evidence, obstruction of justice and perjury for allegedly faking tests at a now-closed state lab.

In a written statement, Republican Charlie Baker, who is running against Coakley, said: "The Charlie Baker is a serious public safety crisis still affecting our communities and it is imperative everyone responsible is held accountable to the fullest extent."

Coakley's office released the following statement: "Our office's investigation first uncovered the full scope of Annie Dookhan's crimes and brought them to the public's attention. We have recommended a significant sentence."

Source: Fox 25 Boston on 2014 Massachusetts Governor's race Oct 18, 2013

Steve Grossman: 7-year sentence not enough for rogue state lab chemist

Those running against Attorney General Martha Coakley in the upcoming gubernatorial election say a proposed sentence of 7 years for rogue state drug lab chemist Annie Dookhan isn't harsh enough. Dookhan is charged with tampering with evidence, obstruction of justice and perjury for allegedly faking tests at a now-closed state lab.

State Treasurer Steve Grossman said, "I just know what makes good, common sense. I don't think this is what makes good, common sense for the people of the Commonwealth." He told FOX 25 the proposed punishment doesn't fit the crime. "I think it's inadequate," Grossman said, noting that Dookhan's actions caused 300 people to be released from jail and 1,100 drug cases have been dismissed. Approximately 40,000 people in the criminal justice system could be affected. "One person has already been shot and killed by somebody who was let out of jail," Grossman said. "I don't think it's an appropriate deterrent, so I think it should be far stronger."

Source: Fox 25 Boston on 2014 Massachusetts Governor's race Oct 18, 2013

Deval Patrick: Misuse of CORI system prevents getting back on their feet

Public safety cries out for a better approach. Sentencing in the Commonwealth has become about warehousing people; and we do little to prepare the 94% of those incarcerated who will one day re-enter civic life. Once released, the misuse of the CORI system makes it nearly impossible for some people to get work, a place to live, and back on their feet. Let's focus less on old rhetoric and more on preventing crime, and pass a meaningful, comprehensive Anti-Crime Bill.
Source: 2009 State of the State speech to Massachusetts Legislature Jan 1, 2009

Karyn Polito: Voted YES on reinstating capital punishment

Massachusetts Democratic Party Platform indicates voting NO in Part X: SAFETY AND CRIME: Clause 3: Death penalty. [State Rep. Polito, a Republican, voted YES].

The Governor recommended legislation reinstating capital punishment in the Commonwealth. A vote of YES would include the Governor's recommended bill, and would reinstate the death penalty for certain crimes, and with numerous safeguards against abuse. The crimes included: terrorism; killing police officers; torture; or murder-sprees.

The relevant part of the MassDems Platform is Part X, clause 3: SAFETY, JUSTICE AND CRIME PREVENTION: In opposing the reinstatement of the death penalty, Massachusetts Democrats join with other western democracies in upholding the Universal Doctrine of Human Rights. Instead, the Commonwealth imposes life in prison without parole for first-degree murderers.

Bill H. 3834 ; vote number H302

Source: Massachusetts House voting record via MassScorecard.org Nov 15, 2005

Marty Walsh: Voted NO on reinstating capital punishment

Massachusetts Democratic Party Platform indicates voting NO in Part X: SAFETY AND CRIME: Clause 3: Death penalty. [State Rep. Walsh, a Democrat, voted NO].

The Governor recommended legislation reinstating capital punishment in the Commonwealth. A vote of YES would include the Governor's recommended bill, and would reinstate the death penalty for certain crimes, and with numerous safeguards against abuse. The crimes included: terrorism; killing police officers; torture; or murder-sprees.

The relevant part of the MassDems Platform is Part X, clause 3: SAFETY, JUSTICE AND CRIME PREVENTION: In opposing the reinstatement of the death penalty, Massachusetts Democrats join with other western democracies in upholding the Universal Doctrine of Human Rights. Instead, the Commonwealth imposes life in prison without parole for first-degree murderers.

Bill H. 3834 ; vote number H302

Source: Massachusetts House voting record via MassScorecard.org Nov 15, 2005

Karyn Polito: Opposed funding Mass Correctional Legal Services

Massachusetts Democratic Party Platform indicates voting YES in Part VI: Safety & Justice:Legal Services. [State Rep. Polito, a Republican, voted NO].

Override Gov. Romney's veto of Budget Line Item 0321-2100, $500,000 for the Massachusetts Correctional Legal Services (MCLS). MCLS provides the only legal aid to indigent incarcerated individuals.

Relevant platform section: PART VI: SAFETY, JUSTICE & CRIME PREVENTION Legal Services: "We support publicly funded legal services to provide legal representation and advice on issues such as housing, employment, domestic violence, health, elder law, public benefits, and immigration. We urge full state and federal funding of such services."

Source citation: Veto Override ; vote number 258

Source: Massachusetts Senate voting record via MassScorecard.org Jul 14, 2003

Richard Tisei: Opposed funding Mass Correctional Legal Services

Massachusetts Democratic Party Platform indicates voting YES in Part VI: Safety & Justice:Legal Services. [State Senator Tisei, a Republican, voted NO].

Override Gov. Romney's veto of Budget Line Item 0321-2100, $500,000 for the Massachusetts Correctional Legal Services (MCLS). MCLS provides the only legal aid to indigent incarcerated individuals.

Relevant platform section: PART VI: SAFETY, JUSTICE & CRIME PREVENTION Legal Services: "We support publicly funded legal services to provide legal representation and advice on issues such as housing, employment, domestic violence, health, elder law, public benefits, and immigration. We urge full state and federal funding of such services."

Source citation: Veto Override ; vote number 258

Source: Massachusetts Senate voting record via MassScorecard.org Jul 14, 2003

Marty Walsh: Supported funding Mass Correctional Legal Services

Massachusetts Democratic Party Platform indicates voting YES in Part VI: Safety & Justice:Legal Services. [State Rep. Walsh voted YES].

Override Gov. Romney's veto of Budget Line Item 0321-2100, $500,000 for the Massachusetts Correctional Legal Services (MCLS). MCLS provides the only legal aid to indigent incarcerated individuals.

Relevant platform section: PART VI: SAFETY, JUSTICE & CRIME PREVENTION Legal Services: "We support publicly funded legal services to provide legal representation and advice on issues such as housing, employment, domestic violence, health, elder law, public benefits, and immigration. We urge full state and federal funding of such services."

Source citation: Veto Override ; vote number 258

Source: Massachusetts House voting record via MassScorecard.org Jul 10, 2003

Scott Brown: Opposed funding Mass Correctional Legal Services

Massachusetts Democratic Party Platform indicates voting YES in Part VI: Safety & Justice:Legal Services. [State Senator Brown, a Republican, voted NO].

Override Gov. Romney's veto of Budget Line Item 0321-2100, $500,000 for the Massachusetts Correctional Legal Services (MCLS). MCLS provides the only legal aid to indigent incarcerated individuals.

Relevant platform section: PART VI: SAFETY, JUSTICE & CRIME PREVENTION Legal Services: "We support publicly funded legal services to provide legal representation and advice on issues such as housing, employment, domestic violence, health, elder law, public benefits, and immigration. We urge full state and federal funding of such services."

Source citation: Veto Override ; vote number 258

Source: Massachusetts House voting record via MassScorecard.org Jul 10, 2003

Carla Howell: Drug prohibition makes crime profitable

Alcohol Prohibition didnít work. Alcohol Prohibition made it profitable for Al Capone and other gangsters to push bad alcohol. With Drug Prohibition, gangs like the Crips and Bloods continue the work of Al Capone. Because of the war on drugs, over 50% of all federal prisoners are nonviolent drug offenders. Mandatory minimum sentence laws which were championed by Ted Kennedy have caused murderers, rapists and child molesters to be released early to make room for non-violent drug offenders.
Source: Eric Darbe, Massachusetts News Jan 5, 2000

  • The above quotations are from Commonwealth of Massachusetts Politicians: secondary Archives.
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2016 Presidential contenders on Crime:
  Republicans:
Gov.Jeb Bush(FL)
Dr.Ben Carson(MD)
Gov.Chris Christie(NJ)
Sen.Ted Cruz(TX)
Carly Fiorina(CA)
Gov.Jim Gilmore(VA)
Sen.Lindsey Graham(SC)
Gov.Mike Huckabee(AR)
Gov.Bobby Jindal(LA)
Gov.John Kasich(OH)
Gov.Sarah Palin(AK)
Gov.George Pataki(NY)
Sen.Rand Paul(KY)
Gov.Rick Perry(TX)
Sen.Rob Portman(OH)
Sen.Marco Rubio(FL)
Sen.Rick Santorum(PA)
Donald Trump(NY)
Gov.Scott Walker(WI)
Democrats:
Gov.Lincoln Chafee(RI)
Secy.Hillary Clinton(NY)
V.P.Joe Biden(DE)
Gov.Martin O`Malley(MD)
Sen.Bernie Sanders(VT)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren(MA)
Sen.Jim Webb(VA)

2016 Third Party Candidates:
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Roseanne Barr(PF-HI)
Robert Steele(L-NY)
Dr.Jill Stein(G,MA)
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Page last updated: Feb 12, 2018