Boston Police Commissioner William Gross blasted liberal judges at a Thursday press conference on a surge in violence, blaming the judges for creating an atmosphere where offenders are not afraid to commit crimes because the courts are closed and violent prisoners–including an accused murderer–are being released by judges because of fears of the COVID-19 Chinese coronavirus spreading behind bars. Gross told the judges, “If you feel so comfortable releasing them, let them stay at your house with your family.”
Boston Police Commissioner William Gross speaks at a press conference May 28, screen image via WCVB-TV/YouTube
One case that Gross singled out was the release last month of accused murderer William James Utley who was out on bail with a GPS monitor for 2016 gun charges when he allegedly stabbed a man to death in a bar fight in 2018. The 40-year-old Utley was jailed awaiting trial after being indicted by a grand jury for second degree murder when he was ordered released by a judge because he has leukemia and would be susceptible to the coronavirus. The judge ordered him released with a GPS monitor.
Separately, on Wednesday night in the Boston neighborhood of Dorchester five people were shot in a mass shooting, one fatally. Two other victims showed up at a hospital–one with a gunshot and the other with a stab wound.
Gross went on rant on his private Facebook page, reported the Dorchester Reporter:
Police Commissioner William Gross last night expressed frustration on his Facebook account.
“On the way to Franklin Field for 8 people shot. Thank you Liberal Judges, for your release of a murderer and several violent persons, YOU have set the tone that people can do whatever they want because there will be no repercussions from the courts,” he wrote.
“Over 45 guns off of the streets from search warrants within a month’s time… 24 directly from a person. Out of the 24, 16 were verified gang members. Several have been bailed the next day or within weeks. It’s the judges, not the D.A. Stand up for your rights people!”
At Thursday’s press conference Gross went further, urging sympathetic judges to let the prisoners live in their homes, reported WHDH-TV:
…“Not one judge has ever provided a certificate that said any COVID-19 releases are fully rehabilitated,” Gross said. “So the mentality on the street is you can do whatever you want.”
As an example, Gross pointed to murder suspect William James Utley, 40, who was released from jail after his attorney argued that a health condition made him more susceptible to the coronavirus.
“If you [judges] feel so comfortable releasing them, let them stay at your house with your family,” Gross said.” Now see if things would change, come on! We’re in the middle of a pandemic!”
Gross said the current mentality on the streets of Boston is “do whatever we want” with no repercussions because the courts are closed.
“Look at the numbers. Five homicides in a row, the attempted murder of four police officers in broad daylight, a 10-year-old girl shot in her apartment, a 17-year-old girl murdered on the street,” Gross said. “Use your common sense and be fair to people in the community. The people are not rehabilitated.”…
Video via WCVB-TV in which Gross also commented it was in many ways unfair to the prisoners to release them under poor conditions, in many cases to areas more infected with the virus than the jails, and without being rehabilitated: