After a week of various news stories about police officers behaving badly, not so long after my 3-parter about that not necessarily being an unusual exception to the rule…it seemed like this update might be rather timely.
According to Boston.com, what’s been forecasted for quite awhile is now apparently happening. The Supreme Judicial Court (“SJC”) has now ordered the dismissal of thousands of drug cases tainted by a former chemist who authorities say was high almost every day she worked at a state drug lab for eight years.
Yes, the old Sonja Farak (hereinafter, the “Chemist”) story again.
According to the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts and Committee for Public Counsel Services (“CPCS”), the state’s public defender agency, more than 11,000 convictions in nearly 7,700 cases are being tossed. Both agencies are also asking the court to throw out thousands of other cases potentially impacted by the Chemist.
Prosecutors have also agreed to dismiss the cases tainted by the Chemist, who pleaded guilty in 2014 to stealing drugs from the lab.
The Chemist’s case is separate from another Massachusetts drug lab scandal that resulted in the dismissal of some 21,000 convictions last year. Of course, both are separate and apart from a rather infamous rogue chemist and the thousands of cases that were dismissed because of her fraudulent actions a few years ago.
There is an old saying, “Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” In more modern terms, I used to watch the television show Twin Peaks, which featured the quote, “It is happening again.”