Judge Rejects Turner's Attempt To Block Special Election

A federal judge has cleared the way for a special election to fill the seat of former Boston City Councilor Chuck Turner, but referred another case to the state's highest court.

Turner had argued the council was wrong to remove him from office last year following his conviction on bribery charges. Turner has been sentenced to three years in prison.

U.S. District Court Judge Mark Wolf said the state Supreme Judicial Court should decide whether the city council had the power to remove Turner from office.

But Wolf said the special election can go on, because it would not cause hardship to Turner, and because residents of District 7 need representation on the council.

City Council President Stephen Murphy said he's pleased the elections will proceed, and he believes the city council acted within its authority to remove Turner after his conviction.

"We're moving as quickly as humanly possible to have a new District 7 seated while the four at-large councilors continue to pick up the slack," Murphy said.

A preliminary election for the seat is scheduled for Feb. 15. The final election will be held March 15. Six candidates are running to take Turner's place on the council.

— You can read the court's memorandum and order, below:

This program aired on February 7, 2011. The audio for this program is not available.


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