Suffolk County, Mass., District Attorney Rachael Rollins' prospects to be the U.S. attorney for the district of Massachusetts will be complicated by allegations that she threatened a woman — and flashed the emergency blue lights on her car — in a parking lot on Christmas Eve, Andrea Cabral told Boston Public Radio on Thursday.
"It does present a problem," said Cabral, the former Massachusetts secretary of public safety.
Rollins had made the short list to be the Massachusetts' chief federal prosecutor before a woman's complaint started drawing scrutiny, according to a report in The Boston Globe.
Attorney General Maura Healey has opened an investigation into the matter. Even if the investigation ultimately results in a finding of no wrongdoing on Rollins' part, said Cabral, the timing will complicate things for Rollins.
"I'm not sure how long the investigation will take," Cabral said. "But while it's pending, I think it's a problem."
Cabral recalled her own experience applying for a job within the U.S. attorney's office in the 1990s.
"They literally ask questions about, 'Is there anything else you want to add that might reflect behavior that might embarrass the United States of America,'" she said. "They really are very focused on the fact that in that position, you represented the United States of America every single day, every minute, and they're very cautious about stuff like that."
Cabral also reflected on the tenure of U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling, a Trump appointee since 2017. Whoever succeeds him will face an FBI background check and Senate confirmation.