Skip to comments.Miss. Gov. Barbour pardons convicted murderer
Posted on 01/09/2012 11:45:04 AM PST by ScottinVA
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour's pardon of a convicted murderer who worked as an inmate trusty at the Governor's Mansion came two weeks after the man was denied parole by a state board.
A letter to one of the victims in the case said the Mississippi Parole Board turned down 40-year-old David Gatlin on Dec. 27. The letter, dated Jan. 4 and obtained by The Associated Press, did not explain why the Parole Board rejected Gatlin's parole request. It said he was due for another parole hearing in October.
Shannon Warnock, chair of the parole board, didn't immediately respond to a message Monday.
Mississippi Department of Corrections spokeswoman Suzanne Singletary said Gatlin was released Sunday after being pardoned by Barbour, a Republican who leaves office Tuesday at the end of his second term.
Barbour's office did not respond Sunday and Monday to messages about the pardon. He has said in the past that releasing the trusties who live and work at the mansion is a tradition in Mississippi that goes back decades. Trusties are prisoners who earn privileges through good behavior.
Still, the move angered the victim's relatives and others.
Gatlin was sentenced to life in prison for killing his estranged wife, Tammy Ellis Gatlin, in 1993, and shooting her long-time friend, Randy Walker. Walker survived. The shootings took place in Brandon, Miss.
Walker's mother, Glenda Walker, said Monday that her son is afraid now that Gatlin is free.
"I have to watch him be almost paranoid when people knock on his door," she said Monday in a phone interview.
Walker said Gatlin shot his estranged wife while she was holding their young baby, then shot Randy Walker in the head.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
Scumbag republican alert.
Evidently, the inmate was a successful butler (or whatever). To Barbour, that trumps a murder conviction.
Yet more evidence that an executive’s power to pardon must not be absolute.
Well... good behavior would've kept them out of prison to start with. The guy MURDERED HIS WIFE!!!! Would Barbour have pardoned O.J.?
Obviously this is not such a case.
Exactly! Scooter Libbey could be pardoned; not so for a wife killer.
Go to hell, Barbour.
“Mississippi Department of Corrections spokeswoman Suzanne Singletary said Gatlin was released Sunday after being pardoned by Barbour, a Republican who leaves office Tuesday at the end of his second term.”
Look at that, right there is the middle of the 4th paragraph, the AP has to mention that Barbour is a Republican.
If a Democratic governor has pardoned a wife-murderer, the AP would not have mentioned his party affiliation.
What state in its right mind would allow a convicted murderer to do work outside a prison wall? Geez. Really?
But again, that does not seem to be the case here, and -- this will mark me as hopelessly discriminatory -- I can't see pardoning a man who killed a woman, particularly his wife.
In what insane world does this make sense?
I am very disappointed in Mr. Barbour. I will endeavor to remember this when he announces he is seeking higher office.
Gee...it’s like a mob is forming on this thread.
Is this his Huckabee moment? Such pardons are foolishness.
Justice, in this case, appears to not only be blind, but deaf, dumb and high on crack...
Although I pray God pardons the guy if he has repented (as obviously Barbour believes), but the job of the Governor is to protect the public by keeping murderers and rapists in prision for as long as possible.
This is sending a message to the parole board and before long, we will have serial murderers released on the public like the good old days of total liberalism and it’s revolving doors.
Huckster did the same thing and one (at least) of the perps he releassed murdered cops eating in a resturant in Washington State after his release.
I suspect all of Barbour’s input was a signature. The decision of who is a trustee, who will work at the governor’s mansion, and often, who will be pardoned is just sent to the governor, who knows little or nothing about the criminal case.
Right at the end of this .pdf file, it explains that the Mississippi state board of pardons and paroles are who recommends pardons to the governor, after they conduct an investigation.
The Democratic legislature & governor of North Carolina passed legislation - the "Racial Justice Act" - that allows every death row inmate to sue to have their sentences overturned - and every one of them is suing. Regardless of the race of the murderer or victim or judge or jury, the system is biased and one way or another the convict got a raw deal and should be released (or whatever).
The new Republican legislature repealed the law, Gov. Bev Perdue vetoed it, and they are a few votes short on the veto override.
From a Clarion ledger article:
“In 1993, David Glenn Gatlin leveled a gun at the head of his wife, Tammy, and killed her while she held their 2-month-old child, then turned the gun on family friend Randy Walker and shot him in the head as well. Walker survived.
Gatlin was convicted in 1994 in Rankin County and given life for murder, 20 years for aggravated assault and 10 years for residential burglary. He has been a trusty at the Governor’s Mansion since Nov. 19, 2009, according to the Mississippi Department of Corrections’ Website.”
So this guy does 18 years in the big house. I’m guessing was a model prisoner the entire time, otherwise he wouldn’t have been in minimum security and on detail to the governor’s mansion.
Do you believe in rehabilitation or do you feel our prisons are for retribution? I know very little about the case but guess the original sentence was 15 years to life, otherwise he wouldn’t have been getting annual parole hearings.
There needs to be a mob outside of the Governor’s mansion.
Punishment and safety of society from the criminal, FIRST. Rehab is secondary, IMO.
This a national journalist ??
Should be trustee not trusty
and trustees not trusties
And in Texas over the last year, there have been at least two cases where further evidence was found which exonerated people who were convicted of murder.
In at least one case, Anthony Graves did 18 years on Death Row for a murder he did not commit and twice reached his date with the executioner.
There needs to be some system to review Death Row cases as we cannot be a society that executes innocent people.
However, this guy is Mississippi is not innocent and should have been left in prison to rot.
Barbour must be good friends with Huckabeeee
A cuckold husband can be dangerous, ladies.
....”till death do us part” ???
David Gatlin and the eyes of a murderer.
If the Parole Board's position on the matter wasn't factored in, that system has a major flaw.
In the immortal words of "President" Schwarzenegger, "I was elected to lead, not to read."
“Gee...its like a mob is forming on this thread.”
And there should be.
And if a Democratic governor had pardoned a cold blooded murderer like David Gatlin, this thread would have hundreds of posts condemning his actions.
Exactly...like a few Border Patrol agents & SW border ranchers who've been railroaded over the past several years. Of course, that's federal, but the principle holds.
One other instance is a person who has served their time, and been out & clean for a long period, but still has an otherwise incurable loss of rights attached.
Mississippi state board of pardons and paroles are who recommends pardons to the governor, after they conduct an investigation.
So much for Barbour’s presidential ambitions.
The only way to be entirely sure is to abolish the death penalty.
Just like the only way to avoid unjust incarceration is to abolish prison terms.
Heck, why do we even bother with a justice system at all? Nothing will ever be perfect!
I believe in retribution STRONGLY.
“Rehabilitation” is, at best, a hit or miss sort of thing. But the victims or their families deserve the satisfaction of revenge since they don’t get to take it themselves.
Find a Flaw Destroy the Conservative Brigade (FFDCB)
They report directly to the White House for their next secret mission.
“Nothing will ever be perfect!”
We have had people in the US who have been moments away from execution for a crime that they did not commit and it is not unlikely that we have executed people for crimes that they did not commit.
While, I am not at all opposed to capital punishment, I favor a better system to review death row cases.
Go to hell, Barbour.
lol. This is the guy that was touted as Presidential material. Why is it that we aim for these losers all the time? FR wanted Brown, Barbour, Haley, Condi, and so many other just to be slapped in the face. We will NEVER learn. They are talking Tebow as President in 2032. But how can we have him as President when we don’t even really know him. It makes ZERO sense to me.
Most likely David has pictures of Gov. Haley Barbour in bed with a young boy....
Sorry. That excuse doesn’t cut it. Any governor should know everything about someone he’s pardoning.
Besides, the parole board denied the guy’s parole just a week or two before the pardon.
He should have been hanged.
I take it that you agree with the governor’s position.
The injustice cannot be undone. Say you get a 10 year spell for bank robbery. After you get out, they realize you're innocent. Oops! Can't get those 10 years of your life back.
Consider life imprisonment as a replacement for the death penalty: maybe the prisoner dies in prison, gets shanked or whatever, dies of old age, loses the prime of his life, whatever. Oops! wrongly convicted! No matter that he's dead or lost 20 years freedom or became Bubba's girlfriend, it's okay now.
The risk is always there. Always. No system is perfect, but justice demands that justice be done.