Saturday, 2:15 PM
Priscilla Matterazzo, Rachel Entwistle's mother
Our dreams as a parent and grandparent have been shattered by the shameful, selfish act of one person, Neil Entwistle. For him to have tried to hide behind an accusation of murder-suicide of this beautiful woman and perfect mother is low and despicable.
Joe and I, our families, and Rachel's friends, students here and in England, were sentenced without the luxury of a trial by jury and now must go on with the eternity of emptiness. Suffering does not begin to describe what we have been enduring without our beloved Rachel and Lillian, who gave our lives such purpose and meaning.
I have lost two generations of my family. I would ask the court to impose two consecutive life sentences in the United States, acknowledging the lives of both Rachel and Lillian.
Joseph Matterazzo, Rachel Entwistle's stepfather
Neil, you have been judged today by a jury of your peers on earth, but one day you will face the ultimate judgment of your horrific deeds and betrayals.
Jerome Souza, Rachel Entwistle's brother
Good morning your honor.
When I was in the second grade, Rachel began kindergarten. For her first ride home, she was put on the wrong school bus. Routes had some overlap -- they were close. But when I got on the bus and saw that she wasn't there, I went and searched the bus lot until I found her and brought her on the right bus to get back home. She's my little sister. I know that I have the responsibility of taking care of her. I screwed up.
I came to realize other joys big brothers enjoy. She wasn't always as fond of those. We grew up in the company of nearly countless cousins who were close to us in age. Many years after our father's death, when our mother remarried, our family grew large and without losing any of the closeness with our other families.
[We] know all of these [as] cousins, brothers and sisters … all of our generations join the parents, grandparents, and aunts and uncles in missing and mourning Rachel and Lillian every day. Each and every day we have to live with the heartache Neil's betrayals brought to our family. The cousins return to visit … [and] we listen to the stories of the children and their first words, first steps, and sports and academic accomplishments.
But we cannot talk about how Lillian did in school, we cannot share her first word. We can't even remember watching her take her first step. We can only wonder how Lilly might have done something. In all of the pictures with Rachel and Lillian, Rachel glows in a way I never saw when we were children. What she was always most proud of was her family.
We were always raised to know that family comes first. But now, when the family comes to visit, we can only recount what Rachel did and speculate on what Lilly might have done. We can tell Lily's cousins what happened to her … but we cannot tell them why. All my cousins, brothers, sisters will have to explain to their children why there's a new picture in front of their frame at grammy and papa's every year, but why Rachel and Lillian's never change. The next generation of my family will have to lose their innocence early, some as little as five months older than LiIlian should be, when their parents can no longer put off their inquiries about Rachel and Lillian.
And I can never ask Rachel for any help in how to explain any of this.
Middlesex Superior Court Judge Diane Kottmyer
The jury has found the defendant guilty of the first-degree murders of Rachel Entwistle and Lillian Entwistle. These crimes are incomprehensible. They defy comprehension because they involve the planned and deliberate murders of the defendant's wife and 9-month-old child in violation of bonds that we recognize as central to our identity as human beings, those of husband and wife and parent and child.
What is all too clear and easily comprehended is the magnitude of the loss and the pain suffered by Rachel and Lillian Entwiste's extended family, in particular Rachel's brother, Jerome Souza, and her mother and stepfather, Priscilla and Joseph Matterazzo.
The sentence for first-degree murder is fixed by law. It is life without the possibility of parole. I understand the rationale of the Commonwealth's recommendation and Priscilla Matterazzo's request that consecutive sentences be imposed in that it recognizes symbolically that there is more than one victim. But I am concerned that if consecutive sentences are imposed people who are not familiar with Massachusetts law will have the erroneous impression that there is the possibility of release on a sentence of first-degree murder when there is not.
As a matter of law a sentence of first-degree murder is an actual life sentence. Absent a pardon by the governor, there is no possibility of release from prison. A consecutive sentence would be purely symbolic.
For that I reason, I am imposing concurrent sentences for the murders of Rachel and Lillian Entwistle. That means that the actual sentence that the defendant will serve will be for both murders. In addition, I am going to impose a period of probation concurrent on the charges of possession of ammunition and possession of a firearm with a condition that the defendant not profit in anyway from the sale of his story either by way of book or otherwise to any media outlet. That is the sentence that will be imposed.
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