Thursday, June 17, 2010

Amy Bishop indicted in brother’s death

New look at 1986 case results in a charge of first-degree murder

By Donovan Slack and Shelley Murphy
Globe Staff / June 17, 2010 

CANTON — Nearly 24 years after Amy Bishop fired a 12-gauge shotgun into the chest of her 18-year-old brother, a grand jury indicted her yesterday on a charge of first-degree murder.

The indictment in the 1986 slaying, which authorities had originally declared an accident, was handed up four months after the 45-year-old college professor was charged with a shooting rampage at the University of Alabama Huntsville, killing three colleagues and injuring three others.

Norfolk District Attorney William R. Keating, announcing the indictment during a press conference, said law enforcement authorities in Massachusetts failed decades ago.

“Jobs weren’t done, responsibilities weren’t met, justice wasn’t served,’’ Keating said.

He added that while Seth Bishop may not have received justice immediately, the once promising youth with an affinity for the violin now has an advocate. “The job of a district attorney is to speak for those who can’t speak, to seek justice for those who aren’t here to demand it,’’ Keating said.

A conviction in 1986 might have changed Amy Bishop’s life, potentially averting the Alabama tragedy, the district attorney said.

“My heart goes out to them,’’ he said of the Huntsville victims....

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