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Justice system failed to protect victim from danger

I cried when I read about the latest domestic violence homicide case in Massachusetts, in which Jared Remy was charged with stabbing Jennifer Martel to death. While we’ve learned so much about domestic violence, passed better laws, strengthened intervention services, trained law enforcement, and so on, it is not enough. Or maybe the improvements just don’t reach beyond preaching to the converted, and the missing link is about how to get through to those who, for some reason, still do not take this issue seriously.

Here is a guy with a documented history of violence, who is released on personal recognizance after being charged with assaulting his girlfriend, and then the next day he is arrested for her murder. He should have been held under the dangerousness law, plain and simple.

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Instead a young mother is dead, her little girl has been exposed to the murder, and at least one neighbor has witnessed a life-altering tragedy.

This was entirely preventable. Neighbors and bystanders knew what to do when they called 911 and tried to step in. The criminal justice system did not.

Holly Curtis


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