Just months before he was bludgeoned to death in a West Virginia prison, notorious Boston mobster James “Whitey” Bulger poured his heart out in a series of letters praising President Trump (he had his vote) and criticizing Robert Mueller, whom he said should be nicer.
The 75 missives were sent to the most unusual of pen pals—a juror who helped to convict him of the 11 murders he carried out during the 1970s and 80s.
Janet Uhlar, a nurse from Cape Cod, shared the letters and photos Bulger sent her with NBC News last week. Uhlar, who says she did not doubt Bulger’s guilt, told NBC that she was troubled by how the U.S. government handled the case, especially the way they cut deals with criminals to testify in Bulger’s trial.
Bulger wrote often about politics and was particularly fond of Donald Trump, writing that he was sure history would look back favorably on the 45th president and unfavorably on former special counsel Robert Mueller.
“Sorry to hear Trump is being boxed in by so many,” Bulger wrote in 2018. “Trump is experiencing what Mueller and company can orchestrate,”
In another letter he wrote, “[Mueller] should observe biblical saying - ‘Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.’”
Then the convicted killer mused that Trump would might outlast all his critics. “History may show Trump was the man of the hour,” Bulger wrote August 2018, adding, “Feel China respects him and hesitant to try to bully him.”
Bulger also wrote, “Trump is tough and fights back instead of bowing down to pressure—and caving in to press!”
The 89-year-old criminal also mused about Trump’s marriage. “My bet is he’s happy with present wife and settled down,” Bulger wrote in one of the letters shared with NBC News. “No way would he wind up in Oval Office with a Monica Lewinsky—That was a scandal! Same media that attacks Trump would cover up for Bill Clinton.”
Uhlar reached out to the convict in a random letter in 2013, to which he replied, “No disrespect, but I don’t trust prosecutors, judges, jurors, FBI agents, CIA...”
Bulger went on to write more than 75 letters–some in flowery cursive penmanship and others in tiny block print–to Uhlar over the next five years.
“All I want is peace and quiet for these last days and sit out on prison yard in my wheelchair,” he wrote just two months before he was murdered in prison. “Good friends ‘lifers’ went out that way under blue sky.”
Uhlar did not share what she wrote in the letters to Bulger, which are presumably in the possession of his surviving family members. “I get some strange mail at times—a grandmother from Kansas—hates Trump wants him ‘impeached’,” he wrote. “She assumes I hate him? Why Because I’m in prison?”
Shortly after the two started corresponding, Uhlar’s son Josiah died of a drug overdose, to which Bulger showed his softer side. “I’m glad your family are there for you, Janet,” he wrote in January 2015. “I'm sure Josiah would want you to understand he loved you and in desperation wanted to have a period free of pain.”
He also wrote fondly of his long-time girlfriend Catherine Grieg, who is to be released to a halfway house after being convicted of harboring a fugitive when she hid him while he was a fugitive. “My No. 1 interest is Catherine’s health and freedom—hurts to see her here and stoic,” Bulger wrote. “Catherine love of my life. We loved these beautiful creatures—had a humbling effect on me. Made me feel and in our 16 years on the run Catherine did for me what the police beatings, prisons couldn’t—kept me Crime free for 16 years and Happiest of our lives.”