Man found not guilty in wake of drug lab scandal
BOSTON (WHDH) -- A man was found not guilty on drug charges in the wake of a scandal at a state drug lab.
The evidence in the case of Shawn Drumgold was called into question because of the scandal at the Jamaica Plain lab. A judge found him not guilty of possession of heroin and crack cocaine on Friday.
Drumgold, 47, made headlines three years ago when he was released from prison where he was serving time for the 1988 murder of 12-year-old Tiffany Moore. Drumgold served a 15-year sentence, but was let go when prosecutors agreed he didn’t get a fair trial.
This time, Drumgold’s trial included arguments that the case was tainted by Annie Dookhan, the chemist at the center of the state drug lab scandal. Ultimately prosecutors said the judge acquitted Drumgold because he didn’t thing the state proved the drugs belonged to him.
Drumgold was one of half a dozen people arrested in a raid on a house in Roxbury last year.
“I believe the Boston police was being vindictive and I just want them to leave me alone and I’m glad the judgment was in favorable to me,” said Drumgold.
Several state chemists testified in Drumgold’s trial, but Dookhan pled the Fifth Amendment and refused to take the stand.
Prosecutors argued the lab scandal shouldn’t have affected Drumgold’s case because Dookhan never tested his drugs. Drumgold’s lawyer argued the results of any drug tests should still have been tossed out.
“They’re trying to say you can trust the samples because they’re sealed and they have initials. When we know for sure that she’s unsealed samples and she’s forged people’s initials. So I don’t know how realistically they make those claims,” said Rosemary Scapicchio, Drumgold’s attorney.
Drumgold said he still believes the only reason he was arrested in the first place was because he won a $14 million dollar judgment against the city for the 15 years he spent behind bars for the death of Tiffany Moore.
Prosecutors insist that wasn’t a factor.
Drumgold has not gotten any of that money. The city has appealed and is waiting for a decision.