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Defrocked priest should not have been placed in dangerous-inmate unit

Defrocked priest should not have been placed in dangerous-inmate unit

Defrocked pedophile priest John Geoghan never should have been moved to the dangerous-inmate unit of a maximum-security Massaschusetts prison, where he was strangled and beaten to death by another prisoner last year, according to an investigative report released Tuesday. A series of "overzealous and unwarranted" discipline reports by a handful of guards led to the frail 68-year-old Geoghan being classified as one of the state's most dangerous prisoners and landed him in a unit with murderer Joseph Druce, investigators found. Druce, who was serving a life sentence for killing a gay man, is charged with Geoghan's murder. The investigation, conducted by a three-member commission appointed by Gov. Mitt Romney, found that failures in the inmate classification system, disciplinary procedures, and internal investigative practices by the Department of Correction all contributed to the circumstances that led to Geoghan's slaying, which occurred August 23. Geoghan, the priest at the center of the Boston archdiocese's clergy sex abuse scandal, was killed at the maximum-security Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center as he and other inmates returned to their cells after lunch. Authorities said Druce followed Geoghan into his cell, then jammed the door shut as he beat and strangled Geoghan.

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