A Florida prosecutor, according to his attorneys, is not turning down notorious ex-FBI agent John “Zip” Connolly’s offer for a medical release.
In an email sent to a Florida Commission on Offender Review official on Saturday and copied to Connolly’s Florida attorney, a prosecutor said, “After speaking with District Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle, the state is not opposed to the compassionate release by John Connolly. Please relate that to the Commission. “
The news came a day after Florida officials told the Herald that Connolly was “terminally ill or medically disabled” and was admitted to a “conditional medical release” hearing on Wednesday. The hearing will be made available to the public by video on the Commission’s website that day at 10 a.m.
Only a 2-1 vote is required under Florida law to release Connolly, said commission spokeswoman Angela Meredith. The three commissioners, she added, will weigh “what is best for the inmate and public safety” and make a decision on the same day.
Connolly was sentenced to 40 years in prison for his dual relationship with James “Whitey” Bulger during the gangster’s grueling reign in South Boston. Bulger was beaten to death in a West Virginia prison in 2018, and now 80-year-old Connolly wants to die at home, his Cambridge attorney said.
“He has multiple melanomas and pretty bad diabetes – two serious diseases,” lawyer Peter Mullane said on Friday. And Connolly’s wife and three grown children, who still live in the Boston area, are hoping the former G-Man can return to Massachusetts, he said.
When Connolly applies for a medical release for dying, a decision to appeal to a new lawsuit is imminent, according to Mullane.
“A decision is expected to be made in the next two weeks,” he said in an email to the Herald. “We are cautiously optimistic that the judge will decide positively. Hopefully this will be at least a pyrrhic (victory) for John, and certainly one that is legally justified and deserved – finally!”
Connolly Florida attorney Craig J. Trocino recently argued that the state had failed to forward an email from a US Department of Justice investigator and that the assistant special agent in charge of the FBI’s Boston office had notified him that he did not believe Connolly’s leaked information responsible for the murders of Brian Halloran, a Bulger employee, and businessman John Callahan. Both were killed by Bulger’s gang, and Callahan’s body was found in the trunk of a car that was left at the Miami airport.
“That information … would have had a significant impact on the jury,” Trocino, director of the Miami Law Innocence Clinic in Coral Gables, said in court documents.