Three takes on Bella

Three female journalists offer three interesting takes on the Bella Bond tragedy.

Boston Globe columnist Joan Vennochi says those moved by the case should skip the teddy bear memorials and demand the Baker administration bring necessary reforms — and funding — to the state Department of Children and Families. “Baker already knows the underlying problems: outdated policies, overwhelmed social workers, and under-funding over time,” Vennochi writes.

Telegram & Gazette columnist Dianne Williamson suggests the problem is far more sinister than an ineffective bureaucracy. She tears into Bella’s parents, Rachelle Bond and Joseph Amoroso, who she describes as “the latest in the train-wreck parade of bad parents who blame everyone but themselves.” Williamson concludes that 2-year-old Bella Bond “lost the parent lottery when she was conceived by two homeless people who couldn’t raise a cat.”

Finally, there is Susan Zalkind in The Daily Beast, who pieces together a devastating portrait of Bond and Amoroso. She reports that Amoroso knocked on Bond’s door two weeks ago, wanting to see his daughter in person for the first time. Bond told him the little girl was on the Cape. When he returned later, Bond confessed that Bella was dead, killed by her boyfriend, Michael McCarthy.

“Amoroso sat in the front row of the courtroom when Bond and McCarthy were escorted in handcuffs to a protective glass cage,” Zalkind reports. “When Bond turned and looked to the courtroom, Amoroso placed a clenched hand over his chest in a show of support. It was a strange solidarity to have with a woman who allegedly tormented his daughter.”

According to Zalkind’s story, “Amoroso said he and Bond both debated calling the FBI or police but never did so.” Williamson, in her column, says Amoroso offered the “gag-inducing tale” that he and Bond planned to report the killing “but we needed to spend time together as a family for what could be the last time.”




More details emerge in court of the horrific abuse endured by Bella Bond in her short life. (Boston Globe).


Worcester officials say they are open to discussing a stadium deal with the Pawtucket Red Sox. (Telegram & Gazette)

The Boston Redevelopment Authority has agreed to take a $2.7 million hit as part of a debt restructuring agreement for the financially struggling Crosstown Center complex in Roxbury. (Boston Herald)

Casey Soward is leaving his teaching job at BU to run The Cabot, a performing arts center in Beverly. (Salem News)


The developer of the proposed Brockton casino predicts court challenges will bog down the Mashpee Wampanoag’s planned gambling resort in Taunton despite last week’s federal ruling allowing the tribe to take land in trust. (State House News Service)


A group of Boston area Catholic high school students are excitedly heading to Philadelphia to see Pope Francis. (Boston Herald)

Rev. Matt Malone, editor of the Jesuit newspaper America — and one-time deputy director of MassINC —  has a half-hour interview with Vice President Joe Biden on Pope Francis, faith, and public life in conjunction with the pope’s visit to the US.

Kim Davis, the Kentucky county clerk who set off a national debate on same-sex marriage, has been altering marriage license forms, much to the consternation of couples who receive them. (USA Today)


And now there are 15: Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker drops out of the GOP race for president. (New York Times) More will — or should — follow him out the door, says Joe Battenfeld. (Boston Herald)

Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders offer competing visions on health care. (Time)


The overwhelming share of jobs added in Boston since 2009 have been lower-wage positions paying less than $38,000 per year, according to a new study from The Boston Foundation. (Boston Globe)

Volkswagen’s car emissions scandal widens. (Time)

Williamsburg residents turn out in force at a public hearing to oppose a Dunkin’ Donuts.


The gap in MCAS scores between white students and their black and Hispanic counterparts narrowed last year, state officials reported. Results from the PARCC assessment, the would-be replacement for MCAS, show lower proficient scores. (Boston Globe)

The Lawrence School Committee, powerless with a state receiver in charge of the schools, has dwindled to just three members, alarming officials who worry that the committee won’t be ready when the receiver returns the schools to city control. (Eagle-Tribune)

Braintree schools will begin stocking Narcan, the overdose-reversing drug. (Patriot Ledger) Hudson does the same. (MetroWest Daily News) Pennsylvania urges its schools to stock the drug. (Governing)

Stonehill College saw poor returns on its investments last year, reflecting an “ominous” trend enveloping some colleges and universities. (Boston Business Journal)


State health care workers jump into the debate over hospital price disparities. (MassLive)


An Eagle-Tribune editorial slams the idea of taxing drivers based on miles driven, but the conservative newspaper acknowledges the state needs more money for transportation. The editorial also runs in the Trib’s sister publication, the Salem News.

Worcester Mayor Joseph Petty urges officials to look beyond the Green Line extension to commuter rail woes. (CommonWealth)


House Speaker Robert DeLeo says he would prefer an omnibus energy bill rather than a piecemeal legislative approach on solar, wind, natural gas, and hydro. (State House News)

Straight from the front lines of the pipeline fight, a Lowell Sun editorial cautiously suggests the DPU’s approval of natural gas contracts suggests the fuel is in short supply.

A power-generating facility that services Boston’s Longwood Medical Area, which drew loud protest from residents when it opened three decades ago, has met with no opposition as it prepares to expand. (Boston Globe)

Senate Democrats unveil a far-reaching climate change bill that they believe will position the party well in next year’s elections despite having near-zero chance of passing the Republican-controlled Congress. (New York Times)

Contamination testing will begin at the site of the former munitions and fireworks factory in Hanover, the prelude to a cleanup that could cost as much as $100 million. (Patriot Ledger)

Sandwich votes to reconstruct a town beach. (Cape Cod Times)

Swampscott agrees to pay a $65,000 fine and clean up pollution at Kings Beach. (The Item)


The US Justice Department is going to help police buy 21,000 body cameras. (Time)

A federal judge ordered former Dartmouth selectman John George to forfeit $1.38 million for “unjust enrichment,” a penalty that is on top of the 70-month prison term he is set to begin and the $688,773 he has to repay the Southeastern Regional Transit Authority after being convicted on conspiracy and embezzlement charges. (Standard-Times)

Federal prosecutors are recommending one year of probation for a Boston police detective who is expected to plead guilty to charges related to tipping off two drug-running gang members that the FBI was on their tail. (Boston Globe)

Worcester police officer Michael Motyka is indicted for assaulting and kicking a handcuffed prisoner. Motyka is white and the prisoner was black. (Associated Press)


Disgraced NBC anchor Brian Williams is set to return to the small screen tonight as the new anchor for breaking news on sister network MSNBC, seven months after his spectacular fall from grace for lying. (New York Times)

Devon Maloney explains why she quit her dream job at the Los Angeles Times after just four months. (Jezebel)


A toast to the life of Daniel Thompson, the inventor of the automatic bagel-making machine that brought the Jewish diet staple to breakfast tables everywhere — and, some say, ruined it in the process. And for good measure he also created the first folding, wheeled, ping-pong table. (New York Times)