Parole board reorganizes after career criminal kills police officer

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Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick announced on Thursday, a reorganization of the state’s parole board, including five resignations and three suspensions, after a career criminal paroled by the board shot and killed a Woburn police officer on Dec 26.

Patrick said he was taking action to restore public confidence in the board after the killing of veteran police officer, John “Jack” Maguire. The officer died in a shootout with Dominic Cinelli, 57, after Cinelli tried to rob a local Kohl’s department store.

Cinelli had been serving three concurrent terms of 15 years to life, when paroled two years ago. He was a career armed robber, who had shot a security guard while on a one-day prison furlough in 1985. Cinelli also died in the shootout.

The governor’s inquiry into the release of Cinelli found “several failings” before and after he was released from prison, including not conducting monthly interviews with friends and family to insure that things were going smoothly with his parole.

“After this review, I cannot say that the Parole Board or parole office did all they could to ensure public safety,” said Patrick at a news conference.

Patrick said that he would introduce legislation that would put third-time violent crime offenders away for the maximum sentence. Until the new board is in place, Patrick said that no violent or high-risk convicts would be paroled.

The five parole board members that resigned include one of Patrick’s campaign volunteers, Parole Board Chairman Mark Conrad, who was appointed to the position by Patrick.

more at The Boston Globe

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