Author granted license

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International

Document Type

Response or Comment

Publication Date

6-10-2022

ISSN

0196-7509

Publisher

Susan A. Bocamazo, Esq.

Language

en-US

Abstract

Four to one.

That is the ratio of former prosecutors to public defenders who sit on the seven-person Supreme Judicial Court, our highest state court.

On our 25-member Appeals Court, which sits one level below the SJC and is the final word in the vast majority of criminal cases, the count is worse: 16 to three. But two of those former public defenders also worked as prosecutors before reaching the bench; and two other appellate judges, while never formal prosecutors, worked in the Attorney General's Office (i.e., in other law enforcement roles).

This staggering imbalance of experience and outlook is unacceptable in the branch of government that is least accountable to the people and most responsible for ensuring individual liberty and fair treatment by law enforcement and the Legislature.

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