Whitey Bulger’s indictment for the murder of Debbie Davis, the long-term girl friend of Steven “Benji Ditchman” Flemmi’, and Deborah Hussey, his step-daughter who sat on his lap as a young girl only to be later raped by him while still a young girl, was the result of a Perfect Storm.
Two men with deep down obsessions in every way mirroring that of Captain Ahab were thrown together by their need and their desperation. One, Steven Flemmi, had escaped doing time in prison despite a long career as a murderous criminal. He was indicted for a murder and for blowing up a car of a lawyer severely maiming him but those charges were made to disappear courteous of the FBI. He had served in the Army in Korea and came back and told of his heroic deeds but had nary a medal to prove the truth of his story. He joined up with the FBI in the 1960s in their nascent Top Echelon Informant Program, a creation of the evil-minded J. Edgar Hoover and his men who operate above the law as an America’s Stasi. During the sixties, seventies, eighties, and into the mid-nineties he was protected and became wealthy. In January 1995 he was arrested as a result of an investigation done by the other man, Fred Wyshak.
Once in jail he reached out to the FBI to extricate him from that situation. It couldn’t. The other man Wyshak now controlled his destiny and he was no friend of the FBI at that time. That would change when they found they were quite similar.
Flemmi found himself rotting in a Plymouth County jail on RICO charges of running a gambling conspiracy along with his fellow gangsters including John Martorano and Frankie Salemme. Reports from the jail were that he was not having an easy time. It would become a lot more uncomfortable when they learned he had been an FBI informant.
The gangsters and their attorneys came up with a plan to defeat the charges against them. Flemmi would admit he had been working with the FBI all those years under its promise not to prosecute him for anything he did; if Flemmi had that pass so did all those who were working him so went the reasoning presented to the judge.
The tactic failed. The ship was sinking. The prison rats all eyed each other warily.
None wanted to spend the rest of his life in prison which looked like the fate that awaited him. It was “let’s make a deal” time. Martorano, also known as Johnny Murderman, the one who had put the gun to the head and pulled the trigger sending a bullet into the brain of more people than a Nazi executioner won the race to rat out the others.
Martorano agreed to testify against Flemmi. He would put him into his Florida and Oklahoma murders saying he was part of the plan to murder these people. He would use the “I didn’t want to do it but someone else made me do it” ploy that Flemmi would play off of so well later.
It minimized the rat’s own responsibility and heightened another’s. Kevin Weeks also could not do time. He went over to the other man to do his bidding. Flemmi understood that they would dime out Whitey which Wyshak wanted but that would also mean he would fall.
He then had no choice. He had to make a deal for himself. His deal would be finalized in a plea agreement entered into by him in a letter dated October 2, 2003.
Flemmi and Wyshak would work together in Wyshak’s pursuit of the Bulgers, Billy and Whitey. Obviously the first thing that had to be done was to explain Flemmi’s murder of the two women. It was like tying to put a shine on a sneaker. It really could not be done other than suggesting Flemmi had no choice. Whitey made him do it.
The difficult part was explaining why Whitey wanted this. It was clear that Flemmi had every reason in the world to do it. They conjured up reasons that under a cursory examination limped.
Wyshak though had a backup. Kevin Weeks who was at Deborah Hussey’s murder. He could attribute no motive to Whitey. But he was motivated, like Flemmi, to put himself as far away from the murder as possible.
He said Whitey slammed Deborah to the floor as soon as she arrived at the murder house; that didn’t sound like Whitey tactic. It did sound very Weeks-like. Brutal. Weeks said when John McIntyre was brought to the same house previous to Deborah that “I grabbed him by the throat and back of his head and he went down to the floor.”
Weeks easily put Whitey into his position with Deborah. He then puts himself upstairs in a bathroom. He told us how surprised he was that Deborah would be murdered. Why? He knew Flemmi had already murdered Debbie Davis.
The zealousness of the prosecutor who not only gave his witnesses who were murderers unbelievable sentence deals, most people with only one murder spend their whole lived in prison, but financial incentives as well coupled with the obvious desire of the witnesses to please him and lessen their own blame makes the whole presentation relative to the murder of the women suspect.
The background of this case, the circumstances of the murders, and the blind zeal of the prosecutor all raise substantial doubts of Whitey Bulger’s involvement in the murders of the women as presented by the prosecutor.