Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins and Public Safety Secretary Thomas Turco had a "positive and productive" meeting Thursday, according to a spokesman for the prosecutor, a week after Turco sent Rollins a letter raising concerns with her tactics.
The Turco letter to the first-year district attorney about her efforts to reform the way the Suffolk County District Attorney's office prosecutes drug crimes and a host of misdemeanors sparked days of backbiting from Rollins and her supporters.
The two officials and senior staff, however, sat down Thursday to hash it out face-to-face, with Turco and his staff going to Rollins's downtown Boston office.
A spokesman for Rollins described the meeting as "positive and productive."
"They identified issues of mutual concern and ideas for possible collaboration as two public safety professionals deeply committed to the residents of Suffolk County and the Commonwealth," said Jake Wark, from the district attorney's office.
Turco sent Rollins a letter last Thursday in response to her March memo outlining a series of crimes, such as shoplifting, that her office would no longer prosecute. Rollins has also made changes to how her office will prosecute drug crimes, raising the bar for bringing distribution charges in a way that Turco worried would undermine the state's fight against opioid addiction.
Rollins responded by questioning Turco's expertise, and in subsequent days express her frustration that the letter had been released to the public before they could talk.
Read more: Rollins: 'What You're Not Going To Do Is Disrespect This Office'
"Secretary Turco may not answer to the electorate that I do, but I welcome his input all the same. That's why I was sure to provide him with a copy of my memo last week. There is no question that working together we can improve public policy while protecting public safety, and I would gladly have taken his call," Rollins said immediately after the letter was received.
"I'm excited that the Secretary shares my commitment to addressing and preventing the violent crime that overwhelmingly affects Black and Brown people in Suffolk County. My prosecutors distinguish between petty offenses and serious criminal conduct every single day, and I'd be happy to address his hypothetical concerns with some of our real world experience anytime he wants to pick up the phone," she said.
A spokesman for Turco echoed Wark's description of Thursday's meeting, telling the News Service in an email: "Earlier today, Sec. Turco had a constructive meeting with District Attorney Rollins to discuss opportunities to work together on important criminal justice policy issues and advance our common goal of protecting the public safety of the people of Suffolk County."
Neither Rollins's nor Turco's offices would elaborate on the specifics of what was discussed or ways the two office might be thinking about working together.
Rollins also met this week with Attorney General Maura Healey, sitting down with her on Wednesday after Healey said this week she hadn't read Rollins's policy memo but knew enough to know that the district attorney was "doing what she promised to do" on the campaign trail last fall.
Wark described the meeting with Healey as "similarly fruitful."
"The DA is looking forward to a continued partnership with the AG on the important policy matters that concern them both," he said.