State House may be gearing up for Henriquez appearance before committee

State House News Service
Jan. 24, 2014

Rep. Carlos Henriquez

When former Rep John Fresolo was the subject of House Ethics Committee deliberations last year, the committee convened its hearings in a first floor conference room that was guarded by court officers who roped off the hallways in an attempt to give those coming and going a clear path in and out of the room.

On Friday, a day after the House passed an order enabling Rep. Carlos Henriquez to be summoned from jail to appear before the same committee, officials appeared to be conducting the same type of room preparations on the first floor of the State House.

The committee's deliberations are secret and an aide to House Speaker Robert DeLeo has declined to comment about next steps for Henriquez after DeLeo and several of his colleagues called for his resignation. Henriquez is appealing a jury's finding that he was guilty of two counts of assault and battery in connection with an early morning domestic violence incident last summer. Judge Michele Hogan sentenced him to serve six months in jail immediately following the jury's verdict.

The committee's proceedings could lead to the rare step of the House voting to expel one of its members. In a letter dated Jan. 21, Ward 15 Democratic Committee members Winston Richie and Eileen Boyle said that the 5th Suffolk District and its 40,000 residents are “without representation in the House” and called on DeLeo to “do everything in your power to allow for a Special Election” so the district can have a voice in expected debates over crime, education, housing and jobs. Ethics Committee Vice Chair Rep. David Nangle was in the State House Friday morning.

- M. Norton, M. Murphy/SHNS