The Wrongful Conviction of Alfred Trenkler
Menu of Motives
These are the six motives, all non-credible concocted by the U.S. Government to convict Alfred of the Roslindale Bombing.
MOTIVE #1: The Government claimed Alfred felt sorry of the years that Shay Jr. had been warehoused in facilites growing up.
FACT : Alfred knew nothing about Shay Jr.'s past. He had met Jr. in June 1991 by total chance through a friend of his, gave him a total of five rides and probably spent all of four hours time with him over a three month period, most on the first night he had met him (apparently Jr. had no place to stay and it was raining that night).
MOTIVE #2: The Government claimed that Alfred built the bomb for Shay Jr. as a surprise present for his birthday.
FACT: Alfred had no idea when Shay Jr.'s birthday was and surely he would not be willing to kill someone for any reason, never mind as a present. In Jr.'s affidavit, he swore that the bomb as a birthday surprise idea came from ATF agent, Jeff Kerr. Prosecutor Paul Kelly dismissed the surprise motive as another hoax by Shay Jr.
MOTIVE #3: The Government claimed that Alfred was upset at the way Shay Sr. treated Shay Jr. and that Jr. wanted to kill his father.
FACT: The only time Shay Jr.'s father was mentioned was on the first night Alfred met Jr. when Jr. couldn't go home because his father was having a party and Sr. hated getting teased by his friends about his gay son (Jr. had recently come out of the closet on Tom Bergeron's" People are Talking" show in 1990). Alfred met with ATF agent Dennis Leahy to retrieve copies of business records taken from him during a search. Alfred told Leahy that Jr. had said that his father hated having Jr. around his friends because he was embarrassed by his gay son. Leahy testified that Alfred said Jr. told him he hated his father which is obviously not an accurate representation of the statement that Alfred had made.
MOTIVE #4: The Government claimed that Alfred was trying to curry favors from Shay Jr. by building him a bomb.
FACT: Alfred was never involved with Shay Jr. Alfred did not socialize with Jr. In fact, Jr. only had Alfred's phone number due to a lie about a possible business contact. Shay Jr. would frequently call Alfred until he told Jr. to stop in August 1991 and never even saw him again after that. While Alfred was a friend of the alternative lifestyle community, he was not a participant and had no interest whatsoever in Jr. On July 20, 1993, at Shay Jr.'s trial Judge Zobel herself stated that "[T]he evidence of the association between [Shay Jr] and Mr. Trenkler is relatively slim." However, she still allowed the prosecutor's to present biased evidence from Shay Jr. against Alfred (press conferences and interviews) depicting a relationship and even allowed past aquaintances of Alfred to testify about his sexual past attempting to show a non-existent pattern.
MOTIVE #5: The Government claimed Shay Jr. offered Alfred half of the $400K insurance settlement if Alfred killed Jr.'s father.
FACT: Shay Jr. never discussed any insurance claim by his father with Alfred; Jr. never discussed his family life with Alfred. Jr. had told the insurance company that his father made a living out of lawsuits and was probably faking his injuries. Jr. had been offered to join in the lawsuit but declined, saying he was not like his father. Alfred was a respectable businessman with a thriving, lucrative new business and was not in need of money from anyone let alone money from a criminal enterprise.
MOTIVE #6: The Government claimed that Alfred's communications company was failing and that he was desperate for cash to pay down debts.
FACT: Alfred's company was just starting out and was in the middle of a large $38K contract with the Christian Science Monitor Mother Church in Boston with plans for another $200K contract to follow. Alfred also had another $220K in proposed projects known to him prior to the October 1991 bombing for the following year (1992). Alfred had no debts, had surplus cash in the bank, had just remodeled his office and had the rent paid six months in advance. The ATF agents would obtain the names of Alfred's clients and try to get some of them to stop doing business with him. They even went so far as to tell Alfred's receptionist, Judy Freddette to leave the office and they would answer the business' phones and actually left Alfred messages (which would definitely qualify as police harassment). Christian Science, Videocom Satellite Associates and Fox Channel 25 testified to the work Alfred had done for them in the past and the work planned for the remainder of 1991 and the following year (1992); all this having been discussed prior to the October 1991 bombing.