On June 25, 2015 two-year-old Bella Bond’s unidentified body washed up on shore in a trash bag, on deer island in Boston Harbor.
Bella was the third child of Rachelle Bond, who had a lengthy criminal history. Rachelle’s first two children had been removed from her care, but the Department of Children and Families (DCF) nevertheless deemed Rachelle fit to care for Bella.
In July, police set up a tip line, and a woman called in who told them that the washed up child was Bella, and Rachelle had been behaving in a psychotic fashion when Bella was last seen, however there was no follow-up on the tip.
In September after Bella’s father Joe confronted Rachelle, police called to question Rachelle, but she jumped out of a window and fled. She then told Joe that Michael had killed Bella, and held her hostage for four months. When Joe became upset, Rachelle said “shut the F–K up, they are on to me, you’re going to get me bagged.”
When finally questioned by police, Rachelle told yet another bizarre story claiming Michael had killed Bella and “I couldn’t call the police or anybody after that as he held me hostage and had hitmen waiting outside of my house that would shoot me if I called 911.”
In spite of the changing, bizarre and impossible stories from a woman who was apparently mentally ill, police decided to charge Michael with murder, even though there was nothing to corroborate Rachelle’s impossible story.
At trial, Rachelle’s testimony was contradicted by the Medical Examiner. In spite of the obvious credibility problem, and no independent evidence to link Michael to the crime, the jury convicted Michael of 2nd degree murder after deliberating for just over four days.
Michael Doolin, a Dorchester criminal defense attorney who followed the case closely said he was very surprised by the verdict.
Jonathan Shapiro, defense attorney, said the verdict was a travesty of justice and incomprehensible.
News report and video on the verdict: