Here’s the latest on the “Only in Massachusetts” nightmare I noted last week. Things are heating up in the Bay State over the Romney-appointed judge who released without bail a convicted killer who is accused of the murder of a young couple in Washington state. Mitt Romney is calling for the judge to resign:
Twenty months after he put a career prosecutor on the Massachusetts Superior Court bench, confident in her law-and-order credentials, Mitt Romney called yesterday for the judge to resign because she released without bail a convicted killer who went on to allegedly kill again.
Eric Fehrnstrom, a Romney spokesman, said yesterday that Judge Kathe M. Tuttman should never have freed Daniel T. Tavares Jr. on personal recognizance in July, after he was charged with assaulting two prison guards. Tavares, 41, was near the end of a 16-year sentence for stabbing his mother to death in 1991 and had threatened in a letter – intercepted by prison officials in February 2006 – to kill Romney and other state officials, Fehrnstrom said.
On Monday, after five months in hiding, Tavares was arrested for allegedly shooting to death Brian Mauck, 30, and Beverly Mauck, 28, newlyweds who lived near him in a rural area south of Tacoma, police said.
Romney is now seeking the Republican presidential nomination, touting his record as governor. Some of his female supporters have highlighted his record of appointing women to the judiciary.
“There was a system-wide failure in this case starting with the judge,” Fehrnstrom said in a statement yesterday. “Her decision represented an inexplicable lapse in judgment and was inexcusable. Unless there are facts unknown to us, Governor Romney believes Judge Tuttman should resign.”
Tavares has threatened Romney’s life:
Former Gov. Mitt Romney said yesterday convicted killer Daniel T. Tavares Jr. should never have been released – a decision made by Romney’s own judicial nominee – as it also was revealed yesterday that the twisted felon vowed he would kill the governor and other officials when he got out of jail.
“This is a dangerous man who killed his own mother. He should have been held on bail, given his violent record, attacks on correction officers and a history of threats against public officials, including Gov. Romney,” said Romney spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom in a statement. “It is because of monsters like Daniel Tavares that we need the death penalty.”