State Probation Department Run Like ‘Criminal Enterprise’

State Probation Department Run Like ‘Criminal Enterprise,’ Three Face Federal Charges. Former Probation Commissioner John J. O’Brien and his former deputy commissioners Elizabeth V. Tavares and William H. Burke III will be indicted by a federal grand jury and charged with “racketeering conspiracy” in connection with a scheme of politically-influenced hiring decisions within the department. “This sham system was used by the defendants and other members of the conspiracy to conceal the fact that the hiring decisions were predetermined and not based upon merit, but based upon the nature and extent of the sponsorship,” according to the indictment.  [Globe]

Families of Mattapan Massacre Victims: ‘No Justice. No Peace.‘ Families and friends of the four victims murdered reacted to the jury’s decision to acquit Edward Washington and its failure to reach a verdict for codefendant Dwayne Moore with tears, shouting, fury, and sadness. “We have to swallow this pill. It doesn’t matter how much water we drink, we can never swallow that pill,” said Avis Springette, the aunt of 2-year-old Amanihotep Smith, who was shot to death along with his mother, Eyanna Flonory.  [Globe]

Good Thing Someone is Modeling Something After the T. The MBTA: Providing really great public-awareness campaigns since 2008.  [The Examiner]

How to Spot a Massachusetts Police Officer with 100 Percent Certainty. Massachusetts is contracting with MorphoTrust to arm the state’s 13,000 police officers with $9.50-a-piece ID cards (plus $300 in startup fees per station) so that civilians will never again find themselves in the pesky situation of looking at a police officer and questioning whether it’s really a police officer. But that’s only part of the reason for the change. The other, much more important reason is that it’s really easy to counterfeit police ID cards. Which is good that they’re solving that problem — because who wants to spend thousands of dollars on nametags for police officers when the Average Joe just looks for the uniform or the donut, anyway?  []

Feel-Good Story of the Day: Sugar the Cat’s 19-Story Fall. Sugar is OK. Just some bruising on her lungs.  [NPR]