SALEM (CBS) – Salem Superior Court Judge Tim Feeley has come under fire for several controversial court decisions, including recently releasing alleged child rape suspect Scott Smith of Salisbury out on $1000 cash bail.
Judge Feeley says because he’s not a flight risk, home confinement and a GPS device are suffice. “I routinely use a low bail to keep the defendant in custody until the GPS is ready. But I don’t use a bail for use of flight purposes,” Feeley said in court.
State Representative Jim Lyons filed a bill of address to remove Feeley from the bench because he’s too easy on criminals. “Under Judge Feeley criminals are being protected and the victims are the ones that are suffering,” Lyons said.
Now he wants to make sure Feeley does not continue his pattern of letter criminals out on low bail. “We have a judge who has let a heroin dealer out on the street, a person who murdered someone back out on the street and a sex offender back out on the street,” Lyons said.
Lucy Kohler says her son Kyle died last October over a drug overdose. Though Feeley did not oversee her case, she feels lenient judges are a danger to society.
Multiple protests have called for Feeley’s impeachment. “Our message is to get Judge Feeley off the bench,” Kohler said.
Judge Feeley declined comment but the Mass Bar Association released a statement saying: “No public official should be impeached just because many people disagree with the decision that was made in an honest and non-corrupt manner. Removing Judge Feeley for lawfully exercising his discretion sets a dangerous precedent of bowing to an uninformed mob.”
Scott Smith was released on his own personal recognizance. He is due back in court on October 23rd for a pretrial hearing.