Should Mass. Judges Be Tougher On Crime?

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Massachusetts judges are coming under fire by some high profile law enforcement officials who say they need to be tougher on criminal defendants.

Boston Police Commissioner William Gross said that judges are allowing repeat offenders to return to the streets, after a triple shooting in Mattapan. Plus, the president of the Massachusetts Major City Chiefs of Police Association suggested judges' records be reviewed every five years.

In response, Gov. Charlie Baker has renewed his push to institute more dangerousness hearings, which he says would allow judges to keep more people in custody.

Are these criticism warranted? What role does the judiciary play?


Nancy Gertner, former Massachusetts federal judge, senior lecturer at Harvard Law School and WBUR legal analyst. She tweets @ngertner.

Isaac Borenstein, former Massachusetts Superior Court and Trial judge. He is also a professor at Suffolk University Law School.

This segment aired on August 16, 2018.


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Deborah Becker is a senior correspondent and host at WBUR. Her reporting focuses on mental health, criminal justice and education.



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