Wednesday, February 2, 2011

New Hampshire: Ward Bird Free!

The New Hampshire Executive Council has voted 5-0 to commute the three year sentence of  49-year old Ward Bird, who will be released after serving only two months. Bird had initially sought a full pardon - something that has only been obtained twice by anyone in the last 15 years.

The Council actually voted in Bird's favor, but Gov. John Lynch vetoed the pardon. The Council then voted to commute his sentence, and the Governor the decision stand - making Bird's the first commutation of sentence in his six-year administration. As a result, Bird's felony 2008 conviction for "criminal threatening with a firearm" will remain on his record. In addition, he can no longer own or possess a firearm (rights which a pardon would restore). Says Bird:
"As God is my witness and on the honor of my family and friends in this room today, I did not point or wave a firearm at Christine Harris." 
Bird will be eligible to reapply for a full pardon in two years. See story here and here and here.

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