Parole: Governor Schwarzenegger will not veto the decision to parole a Los Angeles woman who murdered her abusive boyfriend, according to this San Francisco Chronicle story by Bob Egelko. In 1982, eighteen-year-old Flozelle Woodmore shot and killed her boyfriend after an abusive five-year relationship. Their two-year-old child witnessed the killing. This would have made Woodmore 13 years old when the relationship began, and sixteen when her two-year-old child was born. She was convicted of second degree murder and given a 15-to-life sentence. If there was a better case where parole was justified, we would like to see it.
Sex Offenders: More examples of what happens in states that do not keep repeat sex offenders behind bars are described in a story from the Charlotte Observer and another from the Seattle Times here. Both cases involve rapists convicted of multiple offenses who kidnapped and raped new victims after their release. The North Carolina criminal had received a 25-year sentence for a sexual assault in 1984, but was out again nine years later when he was convicted of kidnapping, rape and assault with intent to kill. He was sentenced to 20 years for these crimes but was out on the street again last Tuesday when he was arrested for kidnapping a young mother, raping her at gunpoint and then attempting to run her over with his car. The Washington case involves Pierre West, a Spokane Valley man with two prior rape convictions who was arrested Thursday for the kidnapping, rape and assault of five women since 2005. Police got a break when his most recent victim ran naked from his house and reported the assault.