Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin announced today that Raymond Tempest (age 64) entered an Alford plea in the 1982 murder of Doreen Picard in Woonsocket. The plea was entered in Providence County Superior Court in a proceeding overseen by Superior Court Justice Robert D. Krause.
In entering an Alford plea, the defendant, while maintaining a claim of innocence, is admitting that the prosecution would have presented credible, legal evidence that would have led a judge or jury to return a guilty plea. In the eyes of the Court, the defendant is guilty and is convicted of second degree murder. In accordance with the plea, Justice Krause sentenced Tempest to time served, which equals 23 years and seven months.
Speaking after the proceeding, Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin said, "Today's plea brings about a resolution to a case that has spanned 35 years and results in Raymond Tempest being convicted of the murder of Doreen Picard.
"No family should have to have experience the death of a loved one as the Picard family has had to endure. The family waited for 10 years before Tempest was arrested and convicted for the murder, only to have to go through multiple appeals, parole board hearings, and post-conviction relief petitions. Yet, through great tragedy and loss, the Picard family has shown tremendous dignity and strength and has been the source of inspiration that has buoyed the spirits of the prosecution team when a court decision didn't go as hoped or an argument was lost to the defense. Their strength is rooted in their faith, family, and love for one another.
Kilmartin added, "I cannot thank enough the prosecution team of Assistant Attorneys General J. Patrick Youngs and Christopher Bush, and Special Assistant Attorney General Jeanine McConaghy, along with the Director of our Victim Services Unit Ana Giron, and the entire office for the tireless work they put forth in seeking justice for Doreen Picard. They have carried the weight of this case on their shoulders, and no matter how difficult it became at times, they never once lost sight of the reason for which they were fighting. I am grateful, as I believe the Picard family is as well, for the prosecution team's compassion, hard work, and their belief that no matter the circumstances, they were never going to stop fighting for Doreen and her family."