TOM AND SUSAN MOORE, PETER MOORE’S PARENT, TALK TO THE PLANET … plus … THE BB RUNS WITH IT BUT WITHOUT A BYLINE
By DAN VALENTI
PLANET VALENTI News and commentary
(FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE, THURSDAY, FEB. 2, 2012) — THE PLANET continues to stay in touch with the family of Peter Moore. The human dimension of the tragedy that befell Peter can best be appreciated by a father’s resilience and a mother’s heartbreak, each clothed in thanks for the good people of Pittsfield and Berkshire County who have rallied on behalf of their son.
Imagine one of your children, run down by a driver, nearly killed, and left alone at the side of the room with severe injuries on a cold, December night.
The Moores follow the coverage THE PLANET is giving to the Nilan-Moore Case, and they are grateful for the expressions and gestures of compassion and support. As morale boosters, they have incalculable effect, especially as the family copes with the perception (and likely the fact) that The System railroaded justice to protect the privileged daughter of one of the area least respected GOBs.
Tom Moore, retired captain of the Hartford Police Department, writes:
Both Susan and I want to thank you very much for your interest in and for your efforts on behalf of my son Peter. He is progressing slowly but is making some improvement every day. It still will be a long convalesce before he can obtain any semblance of the level of activity that he enjoyed before being struck by Ms. Nilan. He still must wear a cervical collar 24 hours a day for the next two months. He has two of them so that the one he wears in the shower can dry while he changes to the other.At this point in time, it is not the injuries he received as the result of being struck but the feeling of being let down or betrayed by the State Massachusetts and the Berkshire County Justice System that troubles him the most. Ms. Nilan not being held accountable for her actions erodes the confidence we all must have in our government and social institutions. Crime is always a challenge in a free society.Neither Peter, nor any of his family, wish to see Meredith Nilan incarcerated. However, I personally wouldn’t mind seeing her in an orange jumpsuit picking up trash along East Street in Pittsfield for several weekends. A probable cause hearing held by what I have been told is not a judge, in secret, without the benefit of a public transcript should never be acceptable. I have been informed that by statute this is allowed in Massachusetts so maybe the outrageover what happened to Peter could be channeled into legislation to correct this injustice. You could call it “Peter’s Law.”————————————————[FORMAT ISSUE: PARAGRAPHING IS NOT HOLDING. PLEASE IGNORE. THE WORDS ARE STILL GOOD. WE APOLOGIZE FOR THE INCONVENIENCE]Tom Moore’s words are worth repeating:
“At this point in time, it is not the injuries he received as the result of being struck but the feeling of being let down or betrayed by the State Massachusetts and the Berkshire County Justice System that troubles him the most. Ms. Nilan not being held accountable for her actions erodes the confidence we all must have in our government and social institutions. Crime is always a challenge in a free society.”
Tom Moore nailed it with that last line, which we have italicized. It’s a point THE PLANET has been trying to make from the start — If we can’t count on the integrity of our courts, this “Nation of Laws” that we presumably are cannot function properly. Maybe that is the darkest aspect of the Nilan-Moore Case, this possibility-cum-probability that we are no longer a Nation of Laws. Perhaps it is over for We The People. Perhaps it’s true, that we don’t have a chance.
Peter Moore’s mother, Susan, shared these comments with THE PLANET last night:
To Jeff and Silence Dogood and the many others on this site who have expressed good wishes for Peter and his family I thank you. I also want to thank the many neighbors in your map who have come out to help. Robin has to work and juggle children and Peter’s appointments to rehab which includes walking in the mall. She appreciates the gift cards and dinner baskets from so many people she hardly knows. It helps to take the sting out of the lack of support from the judicial system –especially since tax dollars pay for that! We are waiting anxiously for next weeks opinion but no matter what it is, life must go forward. Peter still has many rounds of tests and perhaps more surgeries in the future. Getting back as close to 100% physically and mentally is what he is focused on so he can also be back at work 100% to support his family. And to those who have expressed concern for Toby, as long as you don’t try to walk him near the spot where Peter was struck, he is back to playing in the house. Toby was so excited to see Peter come home from the hospital that he wouldn’t leave his side. He pretty much stays by Peter all the time. Both of them are looking forward to the day they can go for a walk together again.
We thank Susan and Tom Moore for their graciousness.
THE BORING BROADSHEET NAMES APPELLATE JUDGE
The Boring Broadsheet today ran a story about the Pittsfield Police Department appeal of the magistrate’s decision in the show-cause hearing conducted Jan. 12 in the Nilan-Moore Case.
Here is the link to the article.
A few things are interesting about this. First is, again, the highly unusual practice of running a news story without a reporter’s byline. The story credits “Berkshire Eagle Staff” for these words.
Why by “staff”? Why not name the person or persons who wrote this?
Is it because they do not want any names printed, to protect a reporter or reporters from GOB backlash?
Was the newspaper ordered to print it that way? If so, by whom, and, again, why? Is there another explanation?
Was the story written by someone other than an Eagle staffer and supplied to the paper with a “request” to publish. Look at the first sentence: “A Springfield judge is reviewing the appeal brought by Pittsfield Police in their attempt to bring charges against Meredith Nilan in an alleged hit-and-run accident last month.”
Why the odd wording: ” … in their attempt to bring charges against …” ?THE PPD is not attempting to file charges. The Pittsfield Police HAVE filed charges. They were successful in charging her. The show-cause hearing determined if the evidence backed up the charges enough to send the case to trial.
The online story reports on page one that Nathan Byrnes, the Westfield magistrate, was brought in “because of Nilan’s father’s position.” It doesn’t address WHO made that call and WHY they decided on Byrnes, of many other choices. The BB does say why Springfield District Court Judge William Hadley is hearing the appeal, claiming that Hadley is the judge who steps in “when the potential for a conflict of interest exists.”
Is that why Byrnes was selected, because he is the “go to” magistrate. Or was he selected for other more nefarious reasons?
The BB does not mention that Byrnes closed the hearing, keeping out public, press, Peter Moore, and Moore’s attorney, until the well into the continuation on the jump page. In the online version of the story, it makes NO MENTION of Byrnes hearing being closed, an odd editorial choice, for a couple of reasons:
(1) The fact remains highly relevant
(2) There is no physical limitation to story length in cyberspace. It’s not that they “ran out of space.”
With fewer and fewer people buying the print version of the BB these days and more getting their information from the BB online, leaving out that Byrnes closed the hearing strikes this media critic as a dumb move. Did they leave it out at the behest of the GOB as one of the “inconvenient truths” of this case?
One of our newsroom sources wouldn’t address why the story went without a byline. She did say, though, that THE PLANET’s coverage “definitely” played into the BB running the update today, particularly when we broke the news yesterday as it came from PPD Chief Mike Wynn. Our source clearly did not want to talk about the case when we talked, since she was in the newsroom and because she said the case had become “such a hot political potato.” She said somebody in the newsroom might be listening in.
The BB’s print version described Peter Moore’s head injury, in which he suffered brain damage, with the adjective “mild.” Perhaps their tolerance to pain and that sort of thing of much higher than the rest of us.
The BB says in the story that Judge Hadley “is expected next week to render a decision on whether to proceed with the case,” but it does not reveal how it knows that.
To date, the BB still has not published ONE letter to the editor on Nilan-Moore, nor has it published any of the photographs taken of the SUV Meredith Nilan was driving the night of Dec. 8.
FISHING IT OUT: ANECDOTAL PORTRAITS REVEAL MUCH, THOUGH WE CAN’T SAY WHAT
THE PLANET has heard from a number of sources, none of whom will go on the record or allow their names to be printed with information on Meredith Nilan and Peter Moore. These include habits, driving record, alcohol use, and other aspects of personality. A definite pattern emerges when we hear people present anecdotal portraits of these two people, not alike in so many ways, who have been brought together by the events of Dec. 8.
Our sources include residents in the Winesap Road-McIntosh Avenue enclave off East Street in Pittsfield, where both live; colleagues; members of Berkshire Young Professionals, and others.
The information, which we are using as backgrounder, helps shed light on the understanding of the incident of Dec. 8 and the behavior exhibited by both Nilan and Moore afterward.
Peter Moore, 46, is a father, husband, and son of two great parents, Tom and Susan. His father is an honored, respected retiree of the Hartford, Conn., Police Department. Meredith Nilan, 24, is single, lives at home with her parents, and is the daughter of a man who has long been known as an Ultimate Insider in the game of Pittsfield politics.
ONWARD INTO THURSDAY WE JOURNEY, COUNTING OUR BLESSINGS AND MOVING WITH A LIGHT AND GRATEFUL HEART, WHISTLING ALL THE WAY …
“OPEN THE WINDOW, AUNT MILLIE.”
LOVE TO ALL.