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Friday, April 22, 2005

The Luck of the Irish

Your District Attorney, Michael O’Keefe, is a fine Irish Republican (no, not that kind!), and his recent troubles have brought several Irish proverbs to mind.

It is better to be lucky than wise.

In the years leading up to his run for District Attorney, Mike O’Keefe had almost twenty murders to prosecute. Remember the National Guardsman who chopped up his children and hid them in a duffel bag at the base? Or the lady who was biking who accepted a ride from a stranger and was brutally murdered? Or the son who decapitated his mother in Chatham? These and others, O’Keefe had to handle as first Assistant DA, and he was able to resolve all of them, with a great deal of dispatch, skill and Irish luck. Only the Worthington case eluded him.

A kind word never broke anyone's mouth. Or
Everyone is wise till he speaks

In a spectacular lapse in judgment, O’Keefe spoke – on or off the record, clad or unclad, it doesn’t matter – to an opportunistic writer working on a book, destroying in a moment the reputation for prudence and cautiousness he had built up over the years. Still…

Time and patience would bring the snail to Jerusalem.

The Michael never gave up, and doggedly pursued the case which had become a personal embarrassment to him and a threat to his political future as he contemplates running for reelection for the first time. He needs to act, and makes his second big mistake…

You can't build a barrel around a bung hole.

By initiating a bullying DNA sweep of the small town of Truro, he got attention, all right but all of the wrong kind, as he loses the respect of liberals and conservatives alike, who view the overkill stunt as desperate and futile, as it ultimately proved to be when…

Talk of the devil, and he will appear

The elusive murderer proved to be a suspect questioned early on, and then lost in the process as flashier DNA sweeps and constitutional issues were debated in the national media. O’Keefe’s mulish insistence that his dragnet was necessary and proper makes him look narrow, tyrannical and petty. Blaming the crime lab won’t help. There is only one thing O’Keefe can do now to rehabilitate his image…

When your hand is in the dog's mouth, withdraw it gently.

Nobody has asked what happened to the random Truro DNA samples yet. Now is the moment for O’Keefe to publicly announce, on his own, that they are being destroyed in the interests of justice, and will never be used in any other investigation (before he is forced to do so). O’Keefe has to make a gesture to regain the confidence of the people of Barnstable County, as he can’t hope that he’ll be able to run against a dunderhead like Kevin Callahan again. Or he’ll cease to be the DA next election.

And that would be Irish luck indeed.


Anonymous Crusader said...

I liked the article, Peter. You are a talented writer. This upcoming trial should prove to be an interesting one. Is Mr. O'Keefe going to be the prosecutor?

9:17 PM  

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