Au Pair 'Emergency' Rebuffed

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BOSTON: Louise Woodward versus the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Round 2: State prosecutors on Wednesday began the roller-coaster appeals process with an emergency request for the Supreme Judicial Court to overturn Judge Hiller Zobel's ruling which freed the British au pair. But Boston judge Ruth Abrams simply referred to a full appeals court.

The decision was not unexpected: To uphold the emergency appeal — and send Woodward back to jail for killing baby Matthew Eappen — the prosecution would have had to display a reason why this cannot go through the normal appeals process. Most legal experts couldn’t see one, and the judge seemed to concur. Even in a high profile case such as this, the wheels of justice spin slowly.