Judge Beverly Cannone announced this morning that the Michael Chesna and Vera Adams murder trials have ended in a mistrial.
BREAKING: Judge just declared mistrial in Emanuel Lopes case.
— Robert Goulston (@rgoulston) July 10, 2023
— Sera Congi (@seracongi) July 10, 2023
Mistrial in the murder of Weymouth Police Sgt. Michael Chesna & an innocent bystander. His wife burst into tears as just made the announcement. This, after questions from jurors last week and this morning. New date set for later this month. #wbz pic.twitter.com/xDgnI0ubOM
— Christina Hager (@HagerWBZ) July 10, 2023
As we mentioned in a story published Friday, this is the direct result of Judge Cannone’s failure as a jurist, and Michael Morrissey’s failure as a District Attorney. This was a slam dunk case. The defendant killed 2 people in broad daylight and doesn’t deny doing so. It took Morrissey’s office 5 years to even bring this simple case to trial, ignoring the pain they were putting the families through. Cannone allowed the courtroom to turn into a zoo by:
- Agreeing to impanel a jury from Worcester County that would have to agree to be bused in every day for a month during the summer, which severely limited the potential jury pool and disqualified otherwise qualified jurors.
- Allowing jurors to come to court every day dressed in pajamas, setting a tone that this was not a serious matter, and thus they did not treat it as one (one juror was dismissed for asking out a court officer).
- Refusing to allow the jury to hear critical evidence that might lead them to convict the defendant.
- Instructing family members and witnesses not to show emotion in the courtroom while emotional testimony was discussed.
- Banning police officers from wearing uniforms in court or displaying a thin blue line insignia (something she readily allows at Karen Read’s hearings).
- Refusing to give jurors transcript of expert testimony that they had already heard in order to review it and determine a verdict, thus expecting them to thoroughly remember every piece of information that they had heard over a 4 week period.
- Taking a week off during the middle of the trial.
- Allowing one juror to hold the jury hostage by refusing to participate in deliberations, and sending them home early on Friday.
Judge Cannone is an incompetent, boorish, arrogant woman with an affinity for protecting murderers. It’s what she’s gone out of her way to do repeatedly in the Karen Read legal proceedings, and it’s what she did in the Emmanuel Lopes’ trial. She acts like this because she knows it is nearly impossible to remove a rogue judge like her.
To make matters more complicated the entire process will restart on July 21. Karen Read has a hearing in that same courtroom on July 25. Criminal trials are held from 9-1 and Read’s hearing is scheduled for two, so it should not affect that.
Judge Cannone is no longer the assigned judge to the main courtroom in Superior Court as well. However, she has the ability to insert herself as the judge if she chooses. It’s unclear if she will.
It’s unclear if the new jury will be picked from Norfolk County, but there’s no reason it shouldn’t be. We have Internet in Worcester County and are just as familiar as resident of Norfolk County about the police officer being killed in Weymouth. But if they were going to choose a jury from Worcester County then the trial should’ve been held in Worcester. Forcing jurors to sit on a school bus for a 3 hour back and forth ride to Dedham every day severely limited the jury pool.
This is a complete failure of the justice system, and Michael Morrissey and Judge Cannone should both resign over it. The DA’s Office had 5 years to prepare a case to prove that a man did something that he readily admits to doing. They lost to a public defender. This is the same DA’s Office that is wasting their time and resources, which could’ve been spent on the Chesna trial, attempting to build a ridiculous case against a woman (Karen Read) who they know as a fact is completely innocent. Imagine if they spent half the time into covering for Jen McCabe and Brian Albert as they did trying to get justice for John O’Keefe and Karen Read.
The role of a judge is similar to the role of a referee in a basketball game. If a ref does not blow their whistle early and establish command of the game then players will start fouling harder and fights will eventually break out. The ref will lose control of the game, and that’s their own failure, not the players.
Judge Cannone allowed her courtroom to turn into a 1980’s Detroit Pistons game.
When you step into a courtroom the judge should give everyone in court the aura that they are in charge. They should command respect and a sense of authority through their tone and presentation. Judge Cannone speaks in a soft tone that almost sounds as if she’s whispering. She gives the impression to observers that she doesn’t want to be there and has better places to be. She looks like someone you’d see at last call complaining about her losing Keno tickets, and asking to bum a cigarette.
No wonder jurors felt comfortable dressed in pajamas.
If Cannone commanded respect then there is no way a rogue juror would feel empowered to hold up the proceedings the way they did. The juror was repeatedly crying and refused to participate. A judge should never allow someone to disrespect their court like that. If this juror was too emotionally immature to handle a murder case without breaking down then she should be replaced. There were two more alternates available.
If you were one of the other jurors in this trial you are free to talk about what happened. I urge any of the other 13 remaining jurors to email me at [email protected] to tell us about what was going on in the deliberation room. I would be happy to name and shame the juror that did this, and do a deep background search on them. I express my deepest condolences to the Chesna and Adams families that they were further victimized by the failures of this court, and welcome them reaching out as well. This is a free country, and you have the right to speak your mind, regardless of how much it offends Michael Morrissey and Beverly Cannone.
P.S. Will WCVB legal analyst Greg Henning be criticizing Cannone for her failures? Probably not, considering she just did him a solid by allowing his motion to prevent his client Brian Albert from testifying, and then cancelling an evidentiary hearing the day before it was scheduled to be held.