State Highest Court Considers To Send Serial Rapist To Mental Institution

BOSTON, MA (WBZ-AM) -- Richard Gardner was convicted of raping young boys in Massachusetts and Rhode Island in the eighties.

He has been declared dangerous by three mental health experts now Massachusetts' highest court is considering an effort to have him committed to a mental institution possibly for the rest of his life.

Massachusetts has a law allowing prisoners deemed dangerously mentally ill to be indefinitely committed prior to release Rhode Island does not. The two states do however have a pact that allows for transfers of prisoners from one to the other for specialized treatment.

So Gardner was sent from Rhode Island was home state of Massachusetts in a commitment effort began a Superior Court Judge felt the Commonwealth should not be allowed to commit a prisoner serving another state sentence.

It's that decision that Norfolk Assistant District Attorney Gayle McKenna says should be overturned.

“Here he is in Massachusetts and he squarely fit within the eligibility criteria.” she said to the SJC

McKenna acknowledged that this all could have been avoided had the D.A.'s office not bungled an opportunity to have Gardner committed the last time he was serving a Massachusetts prison sentence.

WBZ NewsRadio1030's Kendall Buhl reports.

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