Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Post on Barbour Pardons

The Washington Post notes outgoing Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour "has pardoned at least four convicted killers who worked as inmate trusties at the Governor’s Mansion, including a man who was denied parole less than two weeks ago." According to the Post, the pardon "outraged victims’ relatives" and Democratic lawmakers are calling "for an end to the custom of governors’ issuing such end-of-tenure pardons." Good luck with that!

Among those benefiting from Barbour's decision making are:
David Gatlin, convicted of killing his estranged wife in 1993; Joseph Ozment, convicted in 1994 of killing a man during a robbery; Anthony McCray, convicted in 2001 of killing his wife; Charles Hooker, sentenced to life in 1992 for murder; and Nathan Kern, sentenced to life in 1982 for burglary after at least two prior convictions.
Gatlin was sentenced to life in prison and the Mississippi Parole Board turned down his parole request on Dec. 27. His next hearing was scheduled for October. McCray pleaded guilty to killing Jennifer Bonds McCray in a cafe in 1991. Ozment was sentenced to life for a slaying which happened during a robbery. But the Post notes:
Barbour’s three predecessors, dating back to 1988, gave some type of early release or pardon to a total of 12 Governor’s Mansion trusties. All but two of them had been convicted of murder. One was serving time for forgery and another for armed robbery and aggravated assault.
 See Post article here.

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