In a 5-2 ruling, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court reinstated criminal charges arising from the COVID-19 outbreak that killed 76 veterans at the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home. Former Superintendent Bennett Walsh and former medical director David Clinton were the only officials to face such charges. Hampden County Superior Court Judge Edward McDonough, Jr. dismissed the indictment in 2021 prompting the appeal.
About a month short of the three-year anniversary of the COVID-19 conflagration at the Holyoke Soldier’s Home, a new structure to oversee veterans programs has taken effect. However, things picked up speed after the legislature issued its own report in 2021.
The saga at the Holyoke Soldier’s Home took another sharp turn Monday after the indictment against the facility’s former superintendent and medical director disintegrated. Hampden County Superior Court Judge Edward McDonough, Jr. granted former Soldiers’ Home super Bennett Walsh and Dr. David Clinton’s motions to dismiss the indictments against them.
On the heels of a devastating Boston Globe report about Governor Charlie Baker and Health & Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders and the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home, a legislative panel is weighing in. Like previous investigators, the Special Joint Oversight Committee on the Soldiers’ Home in Holyoke COVID-19 Outbreak lays into former Superintendent Bennett Walsh. Beyond him, the target of blame is oblique on an individual level.
UPDATED 11:30AM: To include a statement from Walsh’s attorney. A Hampden County Superior Court Judge has sided with the former(ish?) Hoyloke Soldiers’ Home Superintendent, ruling that Governor Charlie Baker’s termination of Bennett Walsh was not valid. The ruling, if upheld, could entitle Walsh to backpay
UPDATED 4:30PM: To include a response from Walsh’s lawyer and details of his reply to the governor’s letter. A day after Governor Charlie Baker announced he was moving to terminate Bennett Walsh, the suspended superintendent of the Holyoke Soldiers Home, a superior court judge slammed
*Update: The US Senate ratified the President’s New START treaty with a united Democratic caucus and 13 Republicans including Mass. Senator Scott Brown. Media outlets report the margin may have been higher absent the DADT vote, but it passed nonetheless, capping a tremendous lame-duck session
Although it will probably not be the 11th, when most are reading this, we would like to take an opportunity to recognize that it is Veterans Day. Unique among most federal holidays in that it does not float to the nearest Monday, Veterans Day was