[anvplayer video=”1008026″ /] WEST WARWICK, R.I. (WPRI) — Two men accused of dumping a woman’s body in the woods after she overdosed on heroin were released from home confinement earlier this year, according to the Attorney General’s office.
Robert Perry, 58 and Lloyd Baker, 54, have been awaiting trial for the kidnap and sexual assault of a 14-year-old girl since 2014. Friday night, Coventry and West Warwick Police say the two men dumped 44-year-old Michelle Farrell’s body in the woods in West Warwick after she overdosed on heroin.
Eyewitness News learned the two men have been back on the street for just a few months. According to the Attorney General’s office, Both Baker and Perry were released from home confinement over the state’s objection after being on home confinement since 2014.
The Attorney General’s spokesperson says when the two were charged in 2014, the state withdrew its request from them to be held without bail because the victim was unable to testify at the time. Both were later indicted by a grand jury, and their bail was revised. In February 2016, Judge Joseph Montalbano modified Baker’s bail and released him from home confinement, over the state’s objection. In March, Montalbano did the same for Perry–also over the state’s objection.
Months later, police say the two men dumped Ms. Farrell’s body in the woods and failed to report her death despite the recently renewed Good Samaritan Law that would have have given them immunity if they called for help when she overdosed.
“Judge Montalbano made the wrong call here,” said Carolyn Medeiros, the executive director of the Alliance for Safe Communities. “This was preventable.” Medeiros lobbies for stricter criminal justice laws, and spoke out against the decision to give Perry bail two years ago.
“The words I really disdain to have to utter is ‘I told you so,'” Medeiros said.
Both men had lengthy criminal records before the alleged kidnapping and sexual assault. Perry served time in Florida for leaving the scene of a crash where someone died. A prosecutor brought up Perry’s criminal past when arguing for stricter bail requirements.
A spokesperson for Judge Montalbano said he could not comment on an ongoing case.
Robert Perry’s own mother weighed in on the situation Tuesday night, telling Eyewitness News she believes her son belongs behind bars.
“I hope he stays locked up,” she said. “If they’re stupid enough to let him out, he is not coming home. He has no home.”
Both Perry and Baker are now behind bars, being held as bail violators. They are now charged with failing to report a death. Both are due back in court on July 5 for a bail violation hearing.
No trial date has been set for either man in the kidnapping and sexual assault case.