NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

February 3, 2014

Vigil Held for Brodie

Hundreds come out to remember 1992 Groveland murder victim

(Continued)

Members of Justice for Beth Brodie are urging the public to sign a petition, as well as write letters to the governor, the district attorney, the parole board and to the media to stop Baldwin and others like him from being paroled.

Many within the Groveland community came out to support the Brodie family and their cause. Some did not even know Beth Brodie but felt the need to be there.

“I grew up in Groveland. I didn’t know Beth personally, but I know others that did and saw how the loss affected them. I felt like I needed to be here to show support,” Rachel Vigeant said.

One of the reasons for the recent SJC ruling is that many believe the mind is not fully developed under 18 years of age.

“By 16, you know what you’re doing. You know hurting someone is wrong,” Vigeant said. “I would like to see the science behind this thought.”

Beth Brodie’s father, Steve Brodie, agreed.

“A 16-year-old knows the difference between right and wrong,” he said. “He should be punished accordingly.”

“The first thing he (Baldwin) said the next day to his mother was, “‘Hey Ma, did I make the news?’ He had no remorse.”

Vigeant said she has been following the Colleen Ritzer case as well, since she knows people in Danvers. Ritzer was allegedly murdered by her 14-year-old student at Danvers High School last year.

The Brodie family lit a candle in memory of Colleen and for the other nine victims in Essex County who could be affected by this new ruling.

Once lighting a candle in memory of their daughter, they lit everyone’s candle with Beth Brodie’s candle. They did this so everyone can “receive Beth’s light.”

As people shared their memories of Brodie, many guests could be seen wiping away tears.

Avery said Beth Brodie was one of the nicest people she ever met.

“Her smile could light up a room,” she said. “She had one of the most sweetest, angelic souls.”

Steve Brodie remembers his daughter as a “happy-go-lucky” teenage girl.

“She was innocent,” he said fighting back tears. “She was kind.”

Avery hopes the candlelight vigil gets noticed by many.

“Hopefully, this all works out and true justice prevails,” she said.

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