A juror in the federal corruption trial of former state probation commissioner John J. O’Brien sharply criticized Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh on Thursday for questioning O’Brien’s guilt, dismissing his comments as reckless and “borderline ridiculous.”
Two days after Walsh defended the disgraced commissioner and said he did not believe O’Brien’s actions were criminal, one of the 12 jurors who found O’Brien guilty of corruption issued an unusual public rebuke, calling Walsh’s comments irresponsible and ill informed.
“He also seems confused as to what the charges were even about,” the juror wrote in an e-mail. “I would hope the mayor of a major city would know something [anything] about an issue before he comments.”
Last week, O’Brien was convicted of running a rigged hiring system that favored friends of legislators over more qualified candidates. His top aide and a deputy were also found guilty in the scheme, a verdict law enforcement officials said should deliver a strong warning against political corruption.
But on Tuesday, Walsh said he knew O’Brien to be a “good man” and described the case as “a sad day for Massachusetts.”
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