Ruth O'Meara-Costello

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So far Ruth O'Meara-Costello has created 33 blog entries.

MACDL and CPCS Amicus Brief Challenges Parole Board’s “Non-Aggregation” Regulation

On August 20, 2020, CPCS and MACDL submitted an amicus brief to the SJC in Commonwealth v. Dinkins, the parole board’s regulation which makes it so people serving life sentences are “paroled” to any consecutive sentence, rather than having their parole eligibility periods aggregated to one date on which they have a true parole hearing that might actually result in their release into the community. When the […]

By |2020-10-10T11:33:36-04:00August 24th, 2020|Action Alert, News|Comments Off on MACDL and CPCS Amicus Brief Challenges Parole Board’s “Non-Aggregation” Regulation

Juveniles Should Get Credit for Pretrial Detention

MACDL Amicus for Commonwealth v. Lopez

Unlike adult defendants, children in Massachusetts do not receive credit for time spent in detention pretrial. The Commonwealth has justified this practice by emphasizing differences between juveniles and adults. As MACDL writes in its brief:

Children are indeed different, but DYS’s argument perverts that principle in a misguided effort to treat them worse than their adult counterparts. The reality is that pretrial detention […]

By |2020-08-17T20:20:36-04:00August 17th, 2020|News|Comments Off on Juveniles Should Get Credit for Pretrial Detention

MACDL President Responds to Rachael Rollins Comments about Defense Counsel

As reported in the Boston Globe and elsewhere, on April 30th, Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins attacked defense lawyers during an appearance on WGBH, after a caller complained about having trouble reaching his attorney. Read MACDL President Victoria Kelleher’s response to her comments, below. The criminal defense bar has worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to protect individuals in custody from the spread […]

By |2020-05-06T22:56:18-04:00May 6th, 2020|News, President's Messages|Comments Off on MACDL President Responds to Rachael Rollins Comments about Defense Counsel

MACDL and CPCS file SJC Petition Seeking Release of Incarcerated People in Massachusetts

MACDL and CPCS are the plaintiffs in a petition to the SJC, represented by lawyers from the ACLU of Massachusetts, asking the court to take immediate action to limit outbreaks of COVID-19 by reducing the numbers of people who are incarcerated in Massachusetts jails, prisons, and houses of correction, in order “to mitigate the mortal harm that the COVID-19 pandemic will inflict upon incarcerated people, on corrections staff, […]

By |2020-04-14T16:47:32-04:00March 24th, 2020|News|Comments Off on MACDL and CPCS file SJC Petition Seeking Release of Incarcerated People in Massachusetts

Brown Bag Lunch: Next-Level Sentencing Advocacy

March 13, 12:30 to 1:30pm

Todd & Weld, LLP, One Federal Street, Boston

JOIN US for an informal brown bag lunch with Jane Peachy of the Federal Defenders, who will lead a conversation about strategies for excellent sentencing advocacy applicable in both state and federal court. Our discussion will cover both the underlying principles and purposes of sentencing and the nuts and bolts […]

By |2020-03-16T16:56:05-04:00March 13th, 2020|Past Events|Comments Off on Brown Bag Lunch: Next-Level Sentencing Advocacy

MACDL and CPCS Win Preliminary Injunction in Souza Baranowski Lawsuit

On Friday, February 28, Judge Cannone granted a preliminary injunction in a lawsuit filed by MACDL and CPCS against the Massachusetts Department of Condition, regarding conditions at the Souza Baranowski prison. The ruling will allow prisoners to keep legal paperwork in their cells, have sufficient time during business hours to make attorney phone calls, and have in-person visits with their lawyers.

By |2020-02-29T17:29:04-05:00February 29th, 2020|News|Comments Off on MACDL and CPCS Win Preliminary Injunction in Souza Baranowski Lawsuit

MACDL Amicus Seeks to End Pretextual Stops

On February 19, 2020, MACDL, the New England Innocence Project, Lawyers for Civil Rights, and the Houston Institute filed an amicus brief in Commonwealth v. Long, currently pending before the Supreme Judicial Court. The brief asks the court to chart a new path in order to effectively address the problem of racially discriminatory pretextual stops.

As the brief argues, “[o]verwhelming empirical evidence of pervasive racial disparities in traffic enforcement mandates […]

By |2020-02-26T21:51:36-05:00February 26th, 2020|News|Comments Off on MACDL Amicus Seeks to End Pretextual Stops

MACDL Calls on SJC to Increase Bar Advocate Rates

MACDL today, October 17, 2019 MACDL today, October 17, 2019, joined with Hampden Lawyers for Justice and the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts (“ACLUM”) and a team of lawyers from the law firm Morgan Lewis serving as pro bono counsel to file an amicus brief in Carrasquillo v. Hampden County District Court, an appeal pending before the SJC and scheduled to be argued in November.

In […]

By |2020-03-24T15:38:42-04:00October 17th, 2019|News|Comments Off on MACDL Calls on SJC to Increase Bar Advocate Rates

MACDL President Testifies in Support of Act to Reduce Mass Incarceration

MACDL President Victoria Kelleher testified on October 8, 2019 on behalf of MACDL before the Legislative Committee in support of H3358/S826, An Act to Reduce Mass Incarceration, which would permit a parole hearing for prisoners serving life in prison after 25 years. Her testimony focused on (1) the negligible difference between first degree murder, which carries a mandatory sentence of life without the […]

By |2019-10-17T12:44:56-04:00October 17th, 2019|News|Comments Off on MACDL President Testifies in Support of Act to Reduce Mass Incarceration

MACDL and Allies Submit Amicus Brief on Fourth Amendment Issues in Commonwealth v. McCarthy

MACDL, the ACLU of Massachusetts, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and the Committee for Public Counsel Services have submitted a brief on cutting-edge Fourth Amendment issues in Commonwealth v. McCarthy, SJC-12750. The brief attacks the rapidly expanding and largely unfettered use of Automated License Plate Readers (ALPRs) by law enforcement in the Commonwealth and across the country. In the absence of ANY legislation regulating the use of ALPRs […]

By |2019-09-12T22:43:38-04:00September 12th, 2019|News|Comments Off on MACDL and Allies Submit Amicus Brief on Fourth Amendment Issues in Commonwealth v. McCarthy
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