BOSTON (AP) — Rachael Rollins says she has endured racist and threatening messages as she prepares to become Massachusetts’ top federal prosecutor.
Rollins will be the first Black woman to serve as U.S. attorney in Massachusetts following her confirmationby the U.S. Senate earlier this month. She discussed the harassment she has received during a radio interview on Tuesday with GBH News.
“My security team is fielding calls with people using the N-word and saying they want to put a bullet in my head and, you know, they know I have children,” said Rollins, who has served as Suffolk County District Attorney since 2019.
Vice President Kamala Harris cast the deciding vote in Rollins’ contentious confirmation, which split along party lines. Some Republican senators had criticized her progressive approach to crime, most notably Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton, who said Rollins’ confirmation would “put Americans in danger.”
Rollins said her methods, including her decision to not prosecute low-level crimes and to back police reform, is working. She noted that Boston is one of the few major U.S. cities to see a recent drop in violent crime.
“We’ll prove them wrong,” she said about the lack of Republican votes. “It’s not worth a reaction. The numbers speak for themselves. Boston should be a gold standard for places like Arkansas and other places where the murder rate is skyrocketing right now.”
A successor to complete Rollins’ term, which ends in 2022, will be selected by Republican Gov. Charlie Baker.