1. Flemmi might not have been worth it. Given his long history with Bulger and his intimate knowledge of Bulger's misdeeds—acknowledged and alleged—Flemmi seemed like a huge asset before his testimony began. But I'm not sure how much he helped and how much he hurt. Flemmi's memory grew weaker as his testimony progressed. Today, he had a hard time remembering whether or not he had a conversation with Pat Nee after the murders of Brian Halloran and Michael Donahue. Last week, Flemmi struggled to remember how affectionate he'd been with his stepdaughter Deborah Hussey when she was a toddler—before he had sexual relations with her and helped facilitate her murder. If Flemmi's memory is shot, everything he tells the jury about what Bulger did and how he did it needs to be taken with a gargantuan grain of salt.
What's more, Flemmi may be the most deeply unsavory character of all the ex-gangsters the government has partnered with in its attempt to nail Bulger. He didn't just have a sexual relationship with and help murder his stepdaughter; he also helped murder his ex-girlfriend, Deborah Davis. He says Bulger did the actually killing in both cases; Bulger says he didn't.
2. Hank Brennan's a good lawyer. Brennan's withering cross-examination of Flemmi has drawn rave reviews—but today's cross of Richard Buccheri was just as impressive. Testifying for the prosecution, Buccheri offered a harrowing account of a shakedown at which Bulger stuck a shotgun in his mouth, put a .45 to his head, and demanded $200,000.
3. Kevin O'Neil doesn't like to talk. We also heard today from O'Neil, the former owner of Triple O's, the South Boston bar that served as a de facto headquarters for Bulger and his gang. O'Neil was a sight to behold—huge and mashy-faced, with a gravelly voice and a profound aversion to speech. Looking more uncomfortable on the stand than any witness we've seen yet, O'Neil offered single-word answer after single-word answer—then shambled off after a few painful minutes. After six days of the voluble and combative Flemmi, it was quite a come-down.