Arson Suspect Asks Friends for Statements
James M. Carter ’01-’02 has asked his friends to submit character references to the judge presiding of his case, said Carter’s attorney Catherine S. Hinton.
“We are gathering some character references to give the court some sense of who James is as a person, and that he has the support of friends and acquaintances,” Hinton said.
Carter and Colin S. Donnelly ’03 allegedly set fire to the doorbox of a Mather House suite on March 4.
Although damages were minimal, the Cambridge Fire Department filed complaints charging them with “attempt to burn a building” and “malicious destruction.”
Both Carter and Donnelly, arraigned in court on March 28, were required to withdraw from the College this semester, according to the registrar’s office.
Carter sent an e-mail to a group of his friends earlier this week asking them to write one-page letters to the judge by April 26 stating their relationship with him and “anything positive” they knew about him. The letter should conclude, he wrote, by asking the judge to “act with leniency when making a decision.”
Jill C. Stonehouse ’03 said Carter, whom she worked with last semester on the Leverett House Committee, asked her to write a letter.
“If time permits, I’ll write a letter. He just asked for an honest documentary reflecting his character,” Stonehouse said.
John Salsberg, Donnelly’s attorney, declined to comment on whether his client is also collecting character references.
Carter and Donnelly will return to court for a pre-trial conference scheduled for May 13.
—Staff writer Jenifer L. Steinhardt can be reached at email@example.com.