Prosecution rips into Bulger’s first defense witness

bulger james whitey bulger boston
A 1983 mugshot of James “Whitey” Bulger taken at the Boston office of the FBI.
Credit: U.S. Attorney’s office

The first witness called in the defense of alleged mob boss James “Whitey” Bulger was attacked by the prosecution who tried to create a question of credibility in the minds of the jurors. 

Bulger’s defense team had the chance to present its case to jurors on Monday and its first witness was Robert Fitzpatrick, a former assistant special agent in charge of the Boston FBI office.

During direct questioning by Bulger attorney Hank Brennan, Fitzpatrick testified about being tasked with straightening out “major problems” in the Boston FBI office when he was assigned there in 1981. He also said members of the U.S. Attorney’s office in Massachusetts failed to take seriously his warning when he felt that former mobster Brian Halloran’s life was in danger. Halloran, a Winter Hill Gang member, was trying to become an informant for the FBI when he was allegedly killed by Bulger.

But Fitzpatrick’s credibility was immediately called into question when Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian Kelly asked his first question on cross examination.

“You’re a man who likes to make up stories,” Kelly said.

“No,” Fitzpatrick said.

Kelly then, in a sarcastic and sometimes mocking tone, began citing Fitzpatrick’s book “Betrayal,” in which he said he arrested mafia underboss Jerry Angiulo. He also questioned Fitzpatrick’s recounting of being the person to find the rifle that killed Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

“I was the first agent on scene,” said Fitzpatrick, who served as an FBI agent in Mississippi and New Orleans before coming to Boston.

Later, Kelly questioned why Fitzpatrick included a picture of himself in a trench coat standing at the site in Dorchester where Bulger’s gang buried multiple bodies. Kelly asked if it was to imply that he was there when the bodies were dug up when he actually wasn’t.

“I don’t recall that was the reason for the picture,” Fitzpatrick said.

Fitzpatrick’s testimony will continue Tuesday.

Follow Michael Naughton on Twitter @metrobosmike



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking

Local

K-9 nose helps capture $150K in cocaine at…

A furry, four-legged security agent helped authorities stop an illegal cocaine shipment from sneaking past JFK customs.

National

Minnesota man asked to leave Southwest flight after…

A man and his two sons were asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after the man sent a tweet complaining about being treated rudely by a gate agent.

National

Man sues hospital after surprise penis amputation

An Alabama man who went in to a hospital last month for a circumcision awoke after surgery to find his penis had been amputated, his lawyer said on Thursday.

Movies

Review: Brett Ratner's big 'Hercules' movie is small…

The latest "Hercules," starring Dwayne Johnson as the half-god beefcake of Greek myth, strips its hero and tale of most of its fantastical elements.

Arts

Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…

Television

Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

Going Out

Grab a pedestrian and start dancing at What…

As a New Yorker, I’ve mastered the art of focusing my gaze straight ahead. Though it occasionally piques my interest, the absurdities that play out…

NFL

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…

NBA

NBA great LeBron James sends 800 cupcake apologies…

By Kim PalmerCLEVELAND (Reuters) - NBA star LeBron James, whose recent return to the Cleveland Cavaliers in his home state of Ohio sparked a frenzy…

NFL

Jerry Reese confident with Giants, skipping countdown clocks…

Last year, Giants GM Jerry Reese installed a countdown clock in the locker room to inspire Big Blue to play in their own stadium for Super Bowl XLVIII.

Tech

Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.

Tech

Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.

Tech

Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.

Style

Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.