Mark Kerrigan, the brother of former Olympic skater Nancy Kerrigan, has been indicted on a manslaughter charge in the attack that led to his father's death, the Middlesex district attorney said today.
“We allege that the defendant’s violent reckless actions and complete disregard for his father’s safety and well-being endangered Daniel Kerrigan’s life and resulted in the substantial harm that led to his untimely death,” Leone said.
Leone said that Mark Kerrigan went into a "drunken rage" after not being allowed to use the family telephone late that night and his rage led to his "committing the malicious acts that led to the death of his elderly father."
The Kerrigan family issued a statement this afternoon, saying they continued to support Mark Kerrigan.
"We are deeply disappointed at the continued prosecution of Mark Kerrigan. We disagree with the decision to indict and look forward to the facts being considered by an impartial jury. The Kerrigan family continues to believe that he is not responsible for the death of their beloved Daniel Kerrigan," the statement said.
Mark Kerrigan was arrested on the assault and battery charge at the family's Stoneham home on Jan. 24. His father died about an hour after the struggle, and the medical examiner later ruled that the death was a homicide.
After his initial arrest, Mark Kerrigan was ordered to Bridgewater State Hospital because of concerns about his mental health status, but he was released to the family home on Feb. 24 after posting $10,000 cash bail.
The grand jury indicted Kerrigan on April 1, but the indictment was impounded until today. He was informed of the indictment this afternoon and is to be arraigned on the new charges at 9 a.m. Friday in Woburn Superior Court, the district attorney's office said.
The medical examiner determined that the cause of Daniel Kerrigan's death was "cardiac dysrhythmia triggered during a violent physical altercation that resulted in a compression fracture to his left larynx," the district attorney's statement said.
“This defendant should have known that the cruel acts that he committed against his elderly father, including grabbing him by the neck with enough force to cause a fracture, were highly likely to result in substantial harm and endanger his father’s life," Leone said.
The district attorney's statement today offered harrowing new details of Mark Kerrigan's alleged actions on the night of his father's death.
The trouble began at about 7:30 p.m. on the evening of Jan. 23 when Stoneham Police were called to the home for a report of an altercation. Kerrigan and a woman were arguing and she called for help because he would allegedly not let her leave. Daniel Kerrigan returned home in an attempt to calm his son, the district attorney's statement said.
Over the next six hours, Mark Kerrigan allegedly became drunk and argued repeatedly with his parents over using the home phone to contact the woman, demanding that he be allowed to call her.
Prosecutors said that sometime after midnight Kerrigan went to his parents' bedroom screaming obscenities and yelling that the phone didn't work. Daniel Kerrigan and his wife went to the kitchen in an attempt to talk to their son.
Mark Kerrigan then engaged in a heated argument with his father, which escalated to a violent altercation in which the son "pushed, grabbed, and shoved" his father, then grabbed him around the neck, causing a compression fracture in his neck. The victim fell on the floor, unconscious, the statement said.
When police arrived, Mark Kerrigan allegedly told them that his father was faking it.
Janice Bassil, Kerrigan's defense attorney, didn't immediately return a message seeking comment.
Click here to see Leone's statement.
John R. Ellement of the Globe staff contributed to this report.
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