Boston Police Commissioner Addresses Calls for More Transparency From Department

Boston Police Commissioner Michael Cox said if the public is in harm’s way, the department shares that information immediately. He also promised to look into the public’s concerns about making information available

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After two murders and few details in the city of Boston, members of the public are frustrated and concerned. They say police are not sharing information in a timely manner and now the Boston Police commissioner is responding to the criticism. 

Police have released very few details about the circumstances surrounding the assault of man in Downtown Crossing on St. Patrick’s Day. He later died from his injuries and his death was ruled a homicide. Police have yet to make an arrest or say if the murder was random or targeted. 

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“Nobody seems to know anything. If someone gets beat up and dies, that’s serious. It’s not like shoplifting so we want to know,” Karl Voker said, who owns a business on the same where the assault happened. 

In the city’s West End, a 75-year-old man had his throat was slashed by an intruder who broke into his apartment back in February. Friends said they did not find out details about the murder until a month after it happened, when police announced an arrest had been made. 

NBC10 Boston asked Boston Police Commissioner Michael Cox about when the public should be informed of incidents and what the department is doing to improve transparency. 

Cox did not talk specifics on either case, but said sometimes the department withholds details to protect an investigation. 

“If there was a lack of transparency, it was probably something that fell through the crack and not something intentional,” Cox said. 

Cox said if the public is in harm’s way, the department shares that information immediately. He also promised to look into the public’s concerns about making information available. 

“If we do have an issue around timeliness, I will certainly from this point on look into some of the things that you just said,” he said.

Business owners in Downtown Crossing said they understand why all of the information might not be shared, but they said not having any is only creating more fear. 

“We just want to know so we can protect ourselves obviously,” Voker said.  

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