To the editor:
(re: “A different memory,” March 29)
I attended several meetings where Terence O’Toole spoke. When asked why he said that next time Alfred Burns might do something that would get him shot, Mr. O’Toole had a smug response and said that there was more to the story.
No matter what the story was, speaking the words Mr. O’Toole spoke was almost a prediction that would have a horrible ending. Perhaps his words might be used to justify a future event.
Mr. O’Toole showed no remorse for making this prediction, and it seemed that he thought it was justified. To me, it was not a professional response.
He also did not explain why bystanders who were screaming for the policeman to stop punching Mr. Burns in the head 13 times might be arrested for protesting the event. This does not seem fair to me.
Mr. Dinowitz, after a meeting at the Ben Franklin Club where Mr. O’Toole spoke, said that Alfred Burns seemed like a bad cookie — not a quote, just a general comment such as that. Even if Mr. Burns has a record, he deserves a fair trial, not one that already convicts him and puts him on a trajectory — at age 16 — to a lifetime of crime.
People do grow and change.
Jennifer Scarlott was at the two meetings I was at. She cares deeply that justice prevails and that officers who step over the bounds are held accountable. She is not the only one who feels that Mr. O’Toole should answer for his biased comments — there are many in the community who were horrified by the policeman’s actions and Mr. O’Toole’s subsequent comments.