Victim's sister protests book about brother's killer
A book about a local teenage murderer was published last week, marking more than two decades since the 1993 slaying.
"The Boy With a Knife" was published on April 12, which was 23 years to the day that 16-year-old Karter Reed walked into Dartmouth High School and stabbed 16-year-old Jason Robinson to death.
The victim's family told NBC 10 News they are outraged the book was written, let alone published.
"I was upset," said Shauna Robinson, who is the victim's sister. "I called the parole board months ago to stop and put a bug in their ear that I heard it and nothing was done. The book got written and then they published it on the date of the murder."
The author, Jean Trounstine, said the book is about highlighting the problems with the criminal justice system. She said she used the 1993 murder as a case study.
"Any child is capable of change," Troustine wrote.
But Robinson's loved ones said the book is just glorifying a killer.
Shauna said the emotional wounds of her brother's death have never fully healed. She said the new book is just ripping those wounds open again.
That's one of the reasons why Shauna, along with friends and family, traveled from Dartmouth to Cambridge Tuesday night to protest a signing by the author at a book store.
"I can't let her have her little book signing in peace," Shauna said. "She has to know that she has left me not in peace, so I have to go up there and speak for my brother."
The 15 protesters were so loud at times that they drowned out Trounstine during the reading. They held signs that read, "Justice for Jason" and "This is murder," in an attempt to discourage people from buying the book.
"This is about people understanding that there was a life here and that there is someone that died for this book," Matt Alves, one of Robinson's friends, said.
Trounstine said she used Reed's conviction, which included a life sentence, to talk about criminal justice reform. Reed was granted parole and released from prison in 2008.
"I don't believe we should send juveniles to adult prisons," Troustine said. "I don't think it's the way to help our society, and I don't think it's the way to help them."
But Shauna and others who loved her brother believe the book will only make the murderer a celebrity.
She and other protestors said they plan to be even louder at the next book signing, which is set for April 28 in Providence.
"What's being done right now isn't right a murdered shouldn't come out of jail and be doing this," Shauna said.
While Reed wrote the epilogue for the book, Troustine said he is not receiving any money from sales.