– Framed – Video for Full Background on Canton Cover-Up Story
– Donate to the Karen Read Legal Defense Fund
– See all parts of the Canton Cover-Up Series
– Watch the Live Shows and Videos
– Join ”Justice for John O’Keefe and Karen Read” FB Group
Today’s hearing to review the terms of my bail was moved to Wednesday at 3 PM in Norfolk Superior Court, after Special Prosecutor Ken Mello said that he was unprepared to respond to our memorandum. Here’s the motion we filed.bail review memorandum (1)
The stay away orders that 8 of the “witnesses” have on me is problematic and violates my First Amendment rights to free speech and freedom of the press. As my attorney pointed out, I am an award winning journalist with a documented history of breaking major news stories, due largely to my investigative tactics. Michael Morrissey is trying to transform these “time-honored journalistic tactics” into witness intimidation charges. He’s doing so because my journalism is not only exposing the “witnesses” to be liars, but it’s exposing his office and the State Police under his command to be corrupt and complicit in the coverup of John O’Keefe’s murder.
Judge O’Malley could not ban me from writing about the Karen Read case because it would be a blatant First Amendment violation. But his actions, and his use of the term “broad on purpose” to describe the stay away orders, effectively did the same thing by creating a “chilling effect.” I have to live with the constant threat of 90 days of incarceration if the same corrupt hacks who charged me in the first place arbitrarily decide that I violated the order. Examples of ways in which the stay away orders hinder my ability to work include:
- If I say something negative about Jen McCabe, and then a turtle rider messages her something menacing, Tully would argue (wrongly) that it was indirect contact
- I can’t go to Karen Read court hearings if any of the 8 witnesses are there
- I can’t go to Canton Board of Selectmen meetings
- I can’t peacefully protest outside of D&E Pizza
- I can’t ask questions of people who have acted suspiciously in a murder investigation
- I can’t ask a public servant like Michael Proctor any questions
- The order doesn’t say how far away I have to stay from the “witnesses.” What happens if we’re both inside the TD Garden at a Celtics game? Do I have to leave?
Normally stay away orders are for violent offenders, or between two people in a domestic relationship. I am neither.
The spirit of the witness intimidation statute is to prevent witnesses in trials from being threatened into changing their testimony to provide favorable testimony for criminal defendants. Almost all witness intimidation charges involve violent offenders charged with serious crimes, and thus stay away orders are standard. But my case is unique, because no journalist in Massachusetts has ever been charged with witness intimidation for seeking out the subjects of their reporting for questioning. A stay away order is not necessary.
Unfortunately Ken Mello doesn’t work after 5 PM, so he didn’t read the memorandum or prepare for court today. My third grade daughter is expected to do her homework at 7 PM, but Ken Mello’s day officially ends at 5. Judge Peter Krupp gave him the option of moving forward with the hearing without preparing, and Mello seemed inclined to. But after some prompting Mello realized he was thoroughly unprepared and agreed to move the hearing to Wednesday at 3 PM.
Judge Krupp is clearly a sharp, no-nonsense kind of jurist, which is why they wanted him off the Karen Read case. He had read the entire memorandum and charging documents before coming out, and knew exactly what he was going to ask. He understood that this was a First Amendment case, and he said as much as soon as he began talking. He tested my attorney about whether or not the rolling rally was covered by the First Amendment, and asked whether or not it was journalism.
Judge Krupp wrongly stated that the people in the rolling rally were honking their horns, which wouldn’t matter even if it was true. Honking is not a crime, and is constitutionally protected. Going to people’s homes who you believe to be involved in government corruption, and protesting peacefully outside, is protected speech.
But he also missed the bigger point, which my attorney pointed out to him – it doesn’t matter if it’s journalism, because journalists aren’t the only people with First Amendment rights. Anyone with a cell phone and a Twitter account can be a journalist, but participating in a peaceful protest is a constitutional right, protected by the First Amendment.
I’ll be talking more about this on Turtle Club tonight at 9:30. Shoutout to the dozens of turtle riders, many in Free Karen Read shirts, who came out to support independent journalism today. Sorry you didn’t get to see a show, but we’ve only begun the fight.