The latest public safety disruptions in Lawrence have now become political fodder in Methuen, with Mayoral candidate Ken Willette calling for a state takeover of the Administrative functions of the City of Lawrence. Will Willette’s call now inject the Lawrence situation into the Methuen mayoral race? Will the other candidates take the bait, or will they leave the issue to Willette? An interesting political move by Willette. Will the Governor respond, or simply ignore the call? Willette used Facebook to make his call. The statement is below.
Governor Patrick must declare state of emergency and have the Commonwealth take over the administrative functions of Lawrence immediately.
After last night’s widespread and heinous criminal actions, I call upon the Governor to issue an immediate state of emergency in the City of Lawrence and use all of his authority, in conjunction with the Massachusetts Legislature, to commence the process of having the state government take over the daily administrative municipal functions of that community before the lives of public safety personnel are once again endangered by an unruly and dangerous mob, and potentially a deadly outcome occurs. A clear and present danger currently exists in the City of Lawrence that absolutely necessitates an immediate and long-term takeover of the administrative operations by the state government.
The City of Lawrence must be placed into direct receivership before more blood is spilled, before another full-blown and uncontrollable riot occurs and so that state police personnel can add overwhelming force to quell any future mass mob activities. The ABCC must launch immediate investigations of each night club that may have been directly involved in fueling alcohol to this lawless mob. Swift closures, revocations of licenses and stiff fines must be issued.
Neighboring communities are directly contributing their law enforcement personnel to disperse the hostile crowds, make arrests and render mutual aid; therefore, the neighboring communities have a direct stake in ensuring that their law enforcement and firefighting personnel are protected at all costs. The void of leadership in the corner office at Lawrence City Hall must be replaced by the full authority and resources of the state government, including state police, and all state resources must be brought to bear. The lax mentality of the local licensing board must be replaced by the full investigative authority of the ABCC. The continued absence of local oversight and moral leadership will undoubtedly cause a greater escalation of violence, mayhem and alcohol-fueled rage. This is an unmistakable warning shot that the state government must intervene now to protect civilians, properly equip and bolster law enforcement personnel and oversee all administrative functions for the foreseeable future.
Candidate for Methuen Mayor