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Published on February 23, 2024
'Turtleboy' Blogger Kearney Released on Recognizance Amid New Intimidation, Wiretapping ChargesSource: Google Street View

Controversial blogger Aidan Kearney, also known as 'Turtleboy,' was hit with fresh indictments on Friday for witness intimidation and wiretapping, as reported by Boston 25 News. The new charges stem from an incident involving an ex-girlfriend back on December 23rd. Kearney, who had been in jail without bail for allegedly assaulting the same woman, pleaded not guilty to the new charges in Norfolk Superior Court.

Despite the serious charges, Norfolk County Grand Jury's decision to release Kearney on personal recognizance has raised eyebrows. Kearney exited the courthouse to the sound of cheers from his supporters, marking a sharp contrast to the allegations he stands against. According to Boston.com, a judge warned Kearney that any additional criminal charges could lead to a revocation of his release.

Special prosecutor Robert Novack alleged in court that Kearney had threatened to "destroy [the former girlfriend] in front of her kids" and had recorded a conversation without consent, only to later publish an altered version online. Tim Bradl, Kearney's attorney, countered during the hearing, defending his client's actions as part of his journalistic practice and protected by the First Amendment. Bradl argued that the proposed bail conditions would unfairly limit Kearney's ability to cover the Karen Read murder case which he has been deeply involved in.

Aidan Kearney has become an outspoken figurehead of the "Free Karen Read" movement, rallying support for Read who's accused of a heinous crime involving the death of Boston Police Officer John O’Keefe. His involvement and controversial tactics, including filming confrontations with witnesses, led to his initial witness intimidation charges last year. Kearney and Read have allegedly maintained close communication, with accusations of Read passing Kearney non-public case information surfacing recently.

The pre-trial conference for Kearney is scheduled for April 23rd. Meanwhile, the blogger's unabashed supporters continue to back his claims of a First Amendment defense, leaving the public to grapple with a tangle of free speech and law enforcement boundaries. Follow-up developments and further information about the case will be made available as the story unfolds.