Jan. 9, 2012
BOSTON — Gov. Deval Patrick is defending his second-in-charge Lt. Gov. Tim Murray, who's been dogged by questions following his November car crash. On Jan. 9, Murray published an open letter on his website explaining, once again, his side of the story.
"Lt. Gov. Murray has released more information than a little bit and more than is customary for things like this. He's answered every possible question," Patrick said. "We've got a lot of other work to do so I think it's time we moved on."
In the letter, Murray says that he was on the road so early — the accident happened around 5:00 a.m. — because his 5-year-old woke him up and he couldn't fall back asleep.
As for the discrepancy between his original description of the accident and the black-box data released on Jan. 3, he says, "I heard the first responders talking about the black ice on the road… I was shaken-up, and not really knowing how it occurred, I assumed the ice must have caused the accident. In light of the black box data and police report, my assumption was incorrect. I believe I nodded off while driving and the car ran off the road."
The accident was "traumatic," he says.
The letter repeats some of the answers he gave during his Jan. 3 press conference. A transcript of the conference is also posted on Murray's website.
Given that the November police report stated that there was "no improper driving," some pundits and observers — on WGBH's Emily Rooney Show, for instance — have raised the question of whether the police were involved in a purposeful effort to disguise the facts.
But Murray writes, "I have asked for no special treatment. I wanted the Massachusetts State Police to do their job, as they would in any similar case, and they have."
A tale of two stories
In the initial press conference, Murray explains he hit a patch of black ice:
After the police release data from the car, Murray says he must have "nodded off."
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