Whenever I’m notified that a cop killer is being considered for parole, it gets my blood boiling. What’s worse is that this stuff seems to be happening with greater regularity. My friend and colleague, Dan Marcou, wrote so well a couple of years ago that “parole is a national game of Russian Routlette” and he’s absolutely right. I’m paraphrasing him a little bit when I expand on what he’d written and say that it is almost as if parole boards simply load a round into the cylinder, spin it, and then hand the weapon over to their communities.
Lest we forget... Lovelle Mixon was on parole when he murdered Sgt. Mark Dunakin, Officer John Hege, Sgt. Daniel Sakai, and Sgt. Ervin Romans of the Oakland (Calif.) Police Department in March 2009. Maurice Clemmons, who had been paroled in 2004, murdered Sgt. Mark Renninger, Officer Ronald Owens, Officer Tina Griswold, and Officer Greg Richards of the Lakewood (Wash.) Police Department in November 2009.
Neither Mixon nor Clemmons was a convicted cop killer, and yet each one went on to kill four American law enforcers (each!) after being granted parole. What do parole boards think will happen when they contemplate — and God forbid, grant — parole to inmates who have already been convicted of killing a police officer?
Longtime readers of this space already know what to do when they see me write on this subject. For those of you who are relatively new to the program, here’s how it generally works. You’ve got three basic options for voicing your opinion to the parole board. You can...
• Post a petition at roll call and send it to the parole board in question — this is generally the most successful tactic because you can write just one letter and collect dozens, if not even hundreds, of signatures from your PD
• Send a personal letter to that same address — these work really well too, and give you the freedom to say exactly what you want in the language of your choosing
• Post your name, PD, and thoughts on this issue in the comments field below one of my columns on a potential parolee, and I will compile and send those (en masse via overnight mail) to the appropriate person at the Dept. of Corrections for distribution to the members of the parole board
Since I began doing these back in late 2009, PoliceOne Members have helped in the successful prevention of a handful of parole requests made by cop killers across the nation. Let’s go get ‘em.