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FindLaw Newsmaker Profiles - John Kerry
JOHN KERRY
Democratic Candidate for President
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Legal Professionals, see
The Thomson Legal Record for John F. Kerry
Born: December 11, 1943, Denver, Colorado
Occupation: United States Senator
Prior Public Service: Lt. Governor, Massachusetts (1983-1985)
Prosecutor, Middlesex County, Massachusetts (1976-1979)
Lieutenant, U.S. Navy (1966-1970)
Education: B.A., Yale University, 1966
J.D., Boston College, 1976

Jump to:  Cases Involving Kerry | Profile | News & Commentary
Major Cases Involving John Kerry:
MASSACHUSETTS STATE COURT
Case Summary of Facts Case Type Result
Commonwealth of Massachusetts v. Edgerly
(Middlesex Co. Superior Ct., MA, 1977)
Kerry successfully prosecuted the "number two" organized crime figure in New England on charges of rape against a prostitute, a very difficult case. Rape Guilty verdict
DiPerri case
(Norfolk Co. Superior Ct., MA, 1982)
Doctors negligently performed hair restorations on bald men using a controversial procedure, later banned by the FDA, where they implanted carpet fibers into men's scalps. The men's scalps rejected the implants and became infected. Medical
Malpractice
$90K
verdict
Commonwealth of Massachusetts v. Reissfelder
(Suffolk Co. Superior Ct., MA, 1982)
Kerry, assisting his partner Roanne Sragow, won a motion for new trial for George Reissfelder based on his wrongful conviction as an accomplice to murder. The district attorney decided not to bring new charges in the case, and Reissfelder was released. Criminal
Law
New Trial
 
Newsmaker Profile:

      John Forbes Kerry did not have an extensive legal career prior to entering public office, however, the decorated Vietnam War Veteran turned war protestor and political activist did surprise those who knew him by becoming a prosecutor. Kerry's entry into law was his backup plan: after an unexpected and heartbreaking loss in his run for Congress in 1972, Kerry ultimately decided to enroll at Boston College Law School in 1973. According to The Washington Post, in September of 1973, "Boston College law professor Thomas Carey strode into his first-year torts class and was stunned to see, near the back of one row, 'this tall young fellow I'd been mesmerized by a couple of years earlier testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. And there he was, starting off as a regular grunt.'"

      Kerry's path to becoming a prosecutor began in law school. Jeffrey Toobin in The New Yorker quotes Kerry as saying, "I always had a prosecutor's mind and a prosecutor's bent. It was always what I wanted to do, even in law school. There was a rule in Massachusetts that allowed law students to prosecute misdemeanor trials in front of six-person juries, and I got an unbelievable amount of experience before I even graduated."
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