To the editor- Mother speaks for dead son |

To the editor- Mother speaks for dead son

I can’t believe what I read in this newspaper regarding the O’Connor case a few weeks ago. You made it sound like O’Connor’s lawyer was just doing his job when in fact he wasn’t. For those of you who might have forgotten, on Feb. 9, 2000, my son Bradley Parent was shot and killed by Thomas O’Connor. Almost 15 months later, O’Connor has still not been brought to trial. O’Connor was arrested on the day that Bradley was killed and was given a court-appointed defender, Jordan Morganstern. Time and again Mr. Morganstern has asked the judge to postpone O’Connor’s trial, giving reason after reason why he wasn’t ready. During all of this time, O’Connor sits there with a smile on his face. As every new court date approaches, my children and I try to prepare ourselves for this difficult time, reliving all of the pain again and again.

Finally, the trial was set to begin on April 3. Four days before trial Mr. Morganstern once again asked the judge to postpone the trial. After giving his excuses, Judge Kingsbury took him off the case, saying in open court that she feared that if the trial took place that O’Connor’s conviction might be reversed on appeal because of “incompetence of counsel.” She also said that he didn’t have the experience to handle a murder case.

While I’m sure that Judge Kingsbury did the right thing, I can’t help wondering: Why was Jordan Morganstern appointed in the first place? Why did it take 14 months for the judge to realize that this lawyer hadn’t done anything? Does anyone care about victim’s rights? In this case, your paper seems to have taken the side of the killer of my son.

My son cannot speak for himself anymore. His family is his voice. On behalf of Bradley, his family asks this question: How long will it take for justice to be served?

Loretta Ripley

South Lake Tahoe

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