‘Bizarre’ encounter between DA Rollins and 25 Investigates comes up during Senate hearing

BOSTON — Republican Sen. Tom Cotton from Arkansas described a videotaped encounter between Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins and a 25 Investigates crew and the events leading up to it as “bizarre.”

Cotton spoke about the incident Thursday at a Senate Judiciary committee meeting focused on Rollins’ nomination to be the next U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts. Cotton and other Republicans have been attempting to stop the confirmation based on what he describes as Rollins’ “radical pro-crime stances.”

In January, a 25 Investigates producer and photographer encountered Rollins when they went to her street to check the license plate number on her government issued SUV. They went to verify that her vehicle was the one referenced in a Boston Police complaint about a parking lot dispute at the South Bay Mall in Dorchester. Rollins told the crew they were putting her children in danger and threatened to arrest the producer.

25 Investigates began looking into the story after being contacted by Katie Lawson. She said Rollins activated her emergency lights and emergency horn and threatened to ticket her at the South Bay Mall. Lawson said she was trying to merge into Rollins’ lane at the time. Lawson claims Rollins overstepped her authority.

“When a local news crew tried to ask Miss Rollins about the incident… she responded by threatening the news crew on video saying ‘I’ll call the police on you and make an allegation and we’ll see how that works with you,’” said Cotton, adding “She later tried to justify this by saying she thought the news camera was a weapon. It is a truly bizarre case.”

When 25 Investigates asked Rollins about Cotton’s remarks her office directed us to two statements.

One released in January said Rollins has a very different account of the parking lot dispute and she was only trying to protect her family when she spoke to our crew.

One released Thursday said Rollins looks forward to the confirmation process and is deeply grateful for the bi-partisan support she has received.

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