EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

New Hampshire

January 29, 2013

Jesse Brooks' mother fights for his freedom

Jesse Brooks in prison for role in 2005 murder

MANCHESTER — For seven years, Lorraine Brooks has remained silent as she watched her husband and son sentenced to prison for the murder of Derry handyman Jack Reid.

But she broke that silence yesterday, speaking publicly about the case for the first time as she fights to get her son Jesse Brooks out of an Arizona prison.

Lorraine Brooks and her hired team of private investigators spoke of their efforts to free the former Londonderry man at a press conference yesterday that lasted nearly three hours.

“Today, I beg of you to listen to the miscarriage of justice that my son, Jesse Brooks, has suffered through,” she told reporters.

Jesse Brooks, 36, is serving a 15- to 30-year sentence for helping plot the murder of Derry resident Jack Reid in 2005. His father, John “Jay” Brooks, 60, is serving a life sentence for killing Reid with a sledgehammer in a Deerfield barn, believing his former employee stole from him.

But Lorraine Brooks, who has since divorced her husband, was only speaking on her son’s behalf yesterday. She said she was advised by lawyers for years not to comment, but could not maintain her silence any longer.

“With respect to my son, I have decided that I absolutely have to call attention to the travesty and injustice that has befallen him,” she said. “While I always wanted to speak out, I trusted the hired professionals who had more experience than myself on such matters.”

She and her five-member investigative team insist Jesse Brooks was convicted of conspiracy to commit murder based on lies told by other defendants in the case. They also cited misconduct on behalf of prosecutor Janice Rundles and the New Hampshire attorney general ‘s office, led at the time by now U.S. Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H.

“The attention around this case helped catapult Kelly Ayotte into a seat in the U.S. Senate,” Lorraine Brooks said.

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