Monday, March 26, 2012

Florida: Forgiven!

The Tampa Bay Times has an interesting article one Larry Wood who, as "a young man" made "a couple of bad mistakes." Last week, he obtained a pardon from Gov. Rick Scott and three other senior state officials. In 1984, Wood was caught driving with a suspended license. He owed $150 in tickets. About a year later, he was arrested for the battery of his former wife. Both cases involved misdemeanors, but the criminal record has been with him for three decades.

Wood, a stonemason, stood before the State's Board of Executive Clemency and took responsibility for his behavior - his new wife by his side. The board unanimously granted a pardon, even though the Florida Parole Commission recommended his request be denied because of a DUI in Michigan and Wood's driving a snowmobile. He requested the pardon primarily so he could own a hunting rifle. The Times also writes:
The chronically short-staffed Parole Commission is straining under a backlog of 31,000 cases. About two-thirds of them are ex-felons seeking to have their civil rights restored so they can vote; the rest are in other categories, like Wood's. The Legislature in the recently ended session gave the Parole Commission an additional $350,000 so the agency can hire more people to reduce the backlog.
See full story here.

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