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  • Rapists and murderers going free under old law

    Courts agree with N.C. legislation defining life sentences as 80 years long

    RALEIGH, N.C. - A cadre of murderers and rapists, several of whom victimized young girls, will be set free from North Carolina prisons this month after state courts agreed that a decades-old law defined life sentences as only 80 years long.

    Dozens more inmates could be released in the coming months unless the state can figure out a legal recourse to keep them behind bars, officials said Thursday. Gov. Beverly Perdue called them "dangerous criminals" who have repeatedly been denied parole.

    "I'm appalled that the state of North Carolina is being forced to release prisoners who have committed the most heinous of crimes, without any review of their cases," Perdue said in a statement.

    One of the 20 inmates set for release, Bobby Bowden, had argued that a law adopted in 1974 clearly defined life sentences as just 80 years. The 60-year-old convicted murderer believed that the statute, combined with good conduct credits, means his life sentence is now complete.

    The Court of Appeals sided with Bowden last year. North Carolina's Supreme Court rejected an appeal from the state earlier this month after a lawyer from the attorney general's office had argued that the 80-year figure was ambiguous and likely meant to determine when somebody would be eligible for parole.

    'Legal gymnastics'
    Justices on the high court balked at that argument, and an attorney for Bowden called it "legal gymnastics." The statute, which was in place for several years in the 1970s, says: "A sentence of life imprisonment shall be considered as a sentence of imprisonment for a term of 80 years in the state's prison."

    A governor's list of prisoners set for freedom describes a range of gruesome crimes: John Montgomery, 58, was sent to prison in 1973 for raping a 15-year old girl while on escape from Guilford Correctional Center. Faye Brown, 56, was convicted on a first-degree murder charge for the 1975 killing of a state trooper during a bank robbery. Steven Wilson, 52, went to prison in 1978 for abducting and raping a 9-year-old girl.

    All but one of the inmates has been convicted of murder or rape. The 20th, 57-year-old Charles Lynch, was convicted of two counts of second-degree burglary and assault with intent to commit rape.

    'A disaster'
    Thomas Bennett, executive director of the North Carolina Victim Assistance Network, said the plan to release the prisoners is dangerous.

    "This is terrible. This is a disaster," he said. "This is another example of victims not receiving consideration in the way the system works."

  • #2
    Are you freaking serious?!?!? That is absolutely crazy!!!
    Nate's Wifey...is sooo glad he's home!!!

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by GAPEACH2005 View Post
      Courts agree with N.C. legislation defining life sentences as 80 years long

      RALEIGH, N.C. - A cadre of murderers and rapists, several of whom victimized young girls, will be set free from North Carolina prisons this month after state courts agreed that a decades-old law defined life sentences as only 80 years long.

      Dozens more inmates could be released in the coming months unless the state can figure out a legal recourse to keep them behind bars, officials said Thursday. Gov. Beverly Perdue called them "dangerous criminals" who have repeatedly been denied parole.

      "I'm appalled that the state of North Carolina is being forced to release prisoners who have committed the most heinous of crimes, without any review of their cases," Perdue said in a statement.

      One of the 20 inmates set for release, Bobby Bowden, had argued that a law adopted in 1974 clearly defined life sentences as just 80 years. The 60-year-old convicted murderer believed that the statute, combined with good conduct credits, means his life sentence is now complete.

      The Court of Appeals sided with Bowden last year. North Carolina's Supreme Court rejected an appeal from the state earlier this month after a lawyer from the attorney general's office had argued that the 80-year figure was ambiguous and likely meant to determine when somebody would be eligible for parole.

      'Legal gymnastics'
      Justices on the high court balked at that argument, and an attorney for Bowden called it "legal gymnastics." The statute, which was in place for several years in the 1970s, says: "A sentence of life imprisonment shall be considered as a sentence of imprisonment for a term of 80 years in the state's prison."

      A governor's list of prisoners set for freedom describes a range of gruesome crimes: John Montgomery, 58, was sent to prison in 1973 for raping a 15-year old girl while on escape from Guilford Correctional Center. Faye Brown, 56, was convicted on a first-degree murder charge for the 1975 killing of a state trooper during a bank robbery. Steven Wilson, 52, went to prison in 1978 for abducting and raping a 9-year-old girl.

      All but one of the inmates has been convicted of murder or rape. The 20th, 57-year-old Charles Lynch, was convicted of two counts of second-degree burglary and assault with intent to commit rape.

      'A disaster'
      Thomas Bennett, executive director of the North Carolina Victim Assistance Network, said the plan to release the prisoners is dangerous.

      "This is terrible. This is a disaster," he said. "This is another example of victims not receiving consideration in the way the system works."
      this is something!!!!!!! omg......
      Have a Blessed Day

      mamalion
      :

      Comment


      • #4
        I'm sorry to offend anyone out there that may love a rapist or murderer but really this is the worst thing I have ever heard of. NO man who rapes a 9 year old little girl should EVER step foot out in society again. I hate sex offenders. They are the lowest form of scum!
        A life sentence is exactly that LIFE! You have been sentenced to die behind prison walls. If there is one crime that a person can never be rehabilitated from is sex crimes even worse against a child. Absolutly disgusting!

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        • #5
          Did somebody rap you cause you are very upset,if so im really sorry,cause you might become a murderer and start killing sex offenders

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          • #6
            No somebody did not rap me nor have I ever been raped. I do however have a real disgust for anyone who preys on children. I also have a disgust for people like you that can't stop themselves from making ignorant comments. I don't think I am going to go murder sex offenders I would love to see all of them (include yourself if applicable) locked up for the rest of time. Have a nice day.

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            • #7
              You know i use to feel the same way about sex offenders..but then my childhood friend's brother got locked up and charged as a sex offender..when in reality he wasn't a sex offender...he himself was a victim mulitply times by women grown women at that.. from his babysitter to his uncle's wife...there is more to the story..but they too have voices and feelings and have done bad things just as some of our loved ones that are locked up for criminial reasons...some of them are really bad some aren't so bad...but i have stayed in touch with my friend's brother while he has been locked up and if u met him u would never know of his past... or of what has happen..so now i think before i open my mouth ....every case was different and is different..every sex offender has a different case and not only some of them jus had a girl call rape cause she had the upper hand in the situation... i use to think really bad about sex offenders or rapist but in till you walk a mile in their shoes we will really never know...
              I wanna thank you in advance for a beautiful life
              & tell you how happy I am just to be your wife
              You're my rock you know your my confidence
              Got that S on your chest because your my superman

              Comment


              • #8
                ok my problem is with letting sex offenders out whos crime was so heineous as to attract a life sentence but I also know that there are offenders in prison for less. The ones who will re-offend trouble me the most. Rapists and offenses against children. I don't think that they are able to rehabilitate. I feel that there are children who have suffered at the hands of these predators and the years it takes a victim to get past such a thing is actually longer that the sentences they recieved. There is a problem there! I know that some people are registered SO that may have been a couple years apart from their mate That is not what bothers me. I am specificaly talking about crimes against children. I cannot think of anyone who should be allowed their freedom after doing such a thing to a child. Do you really belive that such a person could be treated and released to never offend again? Do you not think thats these people suffer from some form of addiction that makes them crave?

                Comment


                • #9
                  I don't respond of but I have to agree with you turtlesWIFEY. Every situation is different. My husband was accused of rape at age 22 and got 20 years. It turned out the woman was married and she was in her 30's and when her husband found out she cried rape. Because of this my husband got a 20 year sentence. He is not a sex offender and has never touched a child in his life in an innapropriate manner. I have no sympathy whatsoever for pediphiles and neither does he. Every situation is different and each person has a story. Not everyone who is charged with rape is a heinous criminal.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I would have to agree with both turtlewifey and robsladkat. Each person does have their own story and their own facts and battles that each have to fight within themselves. But a young man or a grown man honestly knows the difference between right or wrong whether it be a child or an adult woman. You cannot tell me that a boy or man does not know its wrong to touch or molest or rape someone regardless of how old they are, child or adult. I'm all for you do the crime, you do the time but it all depends on the situation. My brother is incarcerated for rape because she cried rape, a friend of mine is a registered sex offender and served time because he was 18 and she was 16 and they were in a relationship which later lead to marriage. But there are actual people out there that intentionally go out there and seek out children and women to brutally sexually attack them and those are in fact the ones that should never be let out into society again because I do believe they will never change. Why help contribute to ones demons and crimes when so much of it could be prevented by just keeping them away? I honestly believe that some people are born that way, others become that way because of what has been done to them or what they have seen. I believe they are in dire need of psychiatric help but from within the walls of a prison. This is coming from someone that has in fact been raped and had to live with the ordeal of a rapist. Not just someone with a general opinion on rapists.

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                    • #11
                      Pray for their salvation and remember as a man sows so shall he reap

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I expect to hear extreme views on public blogs but am appalled to see them on a blog for families. We of all people should understand how it hurts families to see & hear comments from others who do not know our specific circumstances make these kind of comments. I hear enough comments from the outside about lock em up and throw away the key. I personally think murdering someone, taking their life, is the most serious crime. But I also know that the God I have faith in says, "Repent, and I will forgive." We do not know these inmates so we should not pass judgment. I do think that if they had enough intelligence to participate in a court suit, they may be safe enough to be my neighbor. 60 years is a long time to make changes in your thinking. I'm out of JPay forums. Enjoy your posts.

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                        • #13
                          i agree with u my husband is on the charge he didnt commit and at the same time after the hearin she said he didnt do it it but too late then unless u all know the whole story behind what goes on dont judge.

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                          • #14
                            whos side are you on

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                            • #15
                              There is another important distinction here that needs to be made with sex offenders. Anyone charged with a "sex" crime is considered, by law as a sex offender.
                              However, someone who sends pornographic text messages can now be convicted and is considered a sex offender. An 18 year old who has sex with his underage girlfriend and is charged is a sex offender. Anyone who uses the internet to chat about sex with an underage person can be convicted of a sex crime and is considered, by law, as a sex offender. In the last case, there is no victim at all. These are nearly always sting operations.

                              These sex offenders still have to register (for life, in most states). They are all considered scum because of their label. But there is a huge difference in violent sex offenders (rapists, child molesters) and the other sex offenders listed above.

                              I think it's extremely important not to lump them all together.

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