SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A mold infestation has temporary closed the Hampden County Courthouse. The decision was made Wednesday shortly after Hampden District Attorney Anthony Gulluni ordered the evacuation of his staff from the building, after increasing concerns about mold.
“This has been allowed to go on for decades,” said Raipher Pellegrino, an attorney in Springfield. “It’s horrible in today’s world we are talking about bringing a remediation team to bring about a temporary fix when we failed to get to the heart of the problem.”
Pellegrino was a close friend of Judge William Boyle, who died from ALS, after serving many years in the courthouse.
“Judge Boyle, who was a friend of mine when I served on the city council, died of a difficult disease which I directly associate to that building,” said Pellegrino.
Trials can’t happen right now at the courthouse, so this means they have to be postponed, something that’s happened a lot during the pandemic. Lawyers like Pellegrino know all the logistics to consider when delaying trials.
“Its a logistical issue, upon a logistical issue, which handcuffs everybody,” said Pellegrino. “Expert witnesses, doctors have different schedules. You book these months in advance. Clients may have businesses they have to leave family, daycare, all those issues come into play.”
The Roderick Ireland Courthouse will remain closed for the rest of the week. The mold remediation process is expected to continue through the weekend. While many trials are being rescheduled, emergency matters like restraining orders will be handled at Chicopee District Court for the time being, while arraignments will be conducted both in person and remotely at Westfield District Court. Time-sensitive Superior Court matters will be handled remotely from Franklin Superior Court in Greenfield.