Weymouth MA May 19 2019
An admitted career crook who saw the news about Suffolk DA Rachael Rollins’ no-prosecute list on a jailhouse TV couldn’t believe it when cops in Weymouth slapped cuffs on him for shoplifting $126 worth of goods from a Stop & Shop.
“It’s not a crime, I thought. I saw it on TV when I was in prison,” Glenn Kerivan griped to the Herald on Thursday.
Kerivan, a 59-year-old Arlington man who the cops describe as having a “lengthy” criminal history, was arrested May 9 for shoplifting in a Weymouth store, to which he pleaded guilty the next day and was issued a $500 fine.
The cops say a Stop & Shop loss-prevention officer told them he watched Kerivan walk out of the store with a fruit platter before coming back in and returning it for cash. Then, according to the police report, he walked around the store, grabbing $126 worth of various items and putting them into a shopping bag before leaving.
The Weymouth cops who arrested Kerivan wrote, “His demeanor was very relaxed and (he) stated on numerous occasions that he’d been ‘put away for real crime,’ and that he did not believe shoplifting was arrestable anymore. Kerivan also made unsolicited comments during fingerprinting referencing the Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins and how he believed she no longer prosecuted shoplifting charges.”
Only one problem. Weymouth is in Norfolk County, where DA Michael Morrissey and his prosecutors take a dim view of shoplifting.
Kerivan was referring to Rollins’ list of crimes she has instructed her prosecutors not to bring. That includes 15 crimes she’s pledged not to prosecute, from trespassing and shoplifting, to drug possession and resisting arrest, crimes she’s described as minor and has said “are overwhelmingly crimes of poverty, mental illness and addiction.” Rollins, running on a reformist platform, won election in November to the DA seat in Suffolk County, which includes Boston, Chelsea, Winthrop and Revere.
Morrissey couldn’t be reached for comment. But Cape & Islands DA Michael O’Keefe said thieves thinking it’s open season is a logical conclusion of a list like Rollins’.
“As district attorneys, we felt this was just a matter of time,” O’Keefe told the Herald. “I would like people to be assured that irrespective of what happens in Suffolk County, shoplifting is most certainly a crime in the rest of Massachusetts.”
Rollins’ spokeswoman Renee Algarin defended the Suffolk DA’s policy in a statement Thursday, saying, “Our prosecutors seek to hold offenders accountable while creating the best possible outcomes for victims and impacted communities. Very often, these goals are best achieved through alternatives to prosecution. Suffolk County saw a 16.5% drop in adult criminal complaints between 2015 and 2018 and an even more dramatic drop of 40% in juvenile complaints. During roughly that same time period, both violent crime and property crime dropped across Suffolk County and access to diversion programs increased.”
Weymouth Mayor Robert Hedlund said Kerivan “should have studied geography.”
In a “public service announcement,” Hedlund told the Herald: “Attention shoplifters, you will be arrested in Weymouth. Please leave Weymouth and ply your craft in Suffolk County.”