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Records: Ex-Miss. Gov. Barbour pardons nearly 200
by Emily Wagster Pettus/Holbrook Mohr/The Associated Press
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Former Gov. Haley Barbour, left, and Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves confer during the inauguration of Gov. Phil Bryant at the Capitol in Jackson, Miss., Tuesday, Jan 10, 2012. Barbour in his final days as Mississippi governor gave pardons or early release to dozens of people including 29 whose crimes were listed as murder, manslaughter or homicide state records show. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
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JACKSON — In his final days as Mississippi governor, Republican Haley Barbour gave pardons or early release to nearly 200 people, including more than two dozen whose crimes were listed as murder, manslaughter or homicide, state records show.

A list released by the Mississippi Secretary of State's office on Tuesday showed some of the convicted killers were pardoned, while others were given medical or conditional releases. He had released five other convicted killers in 2008. One of them had been granted a conditional release earlier and was pardoned this time.

Relatives of crime victims had voiced outrage Monday after it was revealed that Barbour had pardoned four convicted murderers. Those men had worked at the Governor's Mansion as part of a prison trusty program.

A complete list was disclosed Tuesday, the day that Barbour's successor, Republican Phil Bryant, was sworn in at the state Capitol. Barbour had served two terms and couldn't run again due to term limits.

In addition to those convicted of manslaughter and murder, Barbour gave early release to people convicted of drug crimes, DUI deaths, burglary and kidnapping. Many of the people were already out of prison or otherwise free.

Among those getting full pardons was the brother of former NFL quarterback and Southern Miss standout Bret Favre. Earnest Scott Favre had his record cleared in the 1996 death of his best friend, Mark Haverty. Favre had driven in front of a train in Pass Christian while drunk, pleaded guilty in 1997, and was sentenced to a year of house arrest followed by two years' probation.

On the way into the Mississippi House chamber for his successor's inauguration, Barbour had no comment when asked by The Associated Press about the pardons.

"It's Phil Bryant's day," Barbour said in response to repeated questions from the AP about what he would say to the victims' relatives.

On Monday, state officials revealed that Barbour had given pardons to five men and that they'd been released.

The former inmates are David Gatlin, convicted of killing his estranged wife in 1993 as she held a baby; Joseph Ozment, convicted in 1994 of killing a man during a robbery; Anthony McCray, convicted in 2001 of killing his wife; Charles Hooker, sentenced to life in 1992 for murder; and Nathan Kern, sentenced to life in 1982 for burglary after at least two prior convictions.

The list released Tuesday shows Barbour also granted a full pardon to Azikiwe Kambule, a South African man whose manslaughter conviction in a 1996 Mississippi carjacking and slaying drew international attention because he was a teenager when the crime was committed and prosecutors had originally sought the death penalty. In June 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear an appeal from Kambule, who wanted to withdraw his guilty plea.

Prosecutors said Kambule and Santonia Berry killed social worker Pamela McGill in Madison County on Jan. 25, 1996, because they wanted the Jackson woman's red 1993 Dodge Stealth sports car. Her body was found nine weeks later when Berry led authorities to it. Defense lawyers said there was no evidence Kambule fired the shots that killed McGill.

Kambule argued in court documents that he knew nothing of the U.S. justice system when he entered into a deal in 1997 to plead guilty to charges in the death of McGill and to accept a 35-year sentence.

Kambule had come to Mississippi two years earlier, when his mother began studying psychology at Jackson State University. His mother and stepfather returned to South Africa several years ago after briefly living in Atlanta.

Although prosecutors sought the death penalty, a Madison County judge ruled Kambule's sentence could not be harsher than that for Berry, the admitted triggerman. Berry received a life sentence without parole after pleading guilty to capital murder.

Kambule was sentenced to 30 years for armed carjacking and five years to being an accessory after a murder. He did not appeal the sentence.

In another case, Barbour gave conditional clemency to Karen Irby, a Jackson socialite who pleaded guilty to two counts of manslaughter in a Feb. 11, 2009, wreck that killed two young physicians who were engaged to each other.

Irby admitted in court that she had two glasses of wine and was going faster than the speed limit when she drove her car into oncoming traffic in northeast Jackson. The Mercedes-Benz driven by Irby hit a pickup truck driven by Dr. Mark Pogue. His fiancee, Dr. Lisa Dedousis, was a passenger in Pogue's truck. Both physicians were killed.

In March 2010, Irby, then 39, pleaded guilty to two counts of manslaughter. In May 2010, she was sentenced to 18 years for each count, with the prison terms to run at the same time.

Barbour released Irby on the condition that she serve three years of house arrest and two years after that under Department of Corrections supervision.

Others benefiting from Barbour's clemency powers were:

—Michael Graham, whose sentence Barbour suspended in 1998 and who was pardoned Tuesday. He was convicted of shooting his ex-wife in 1989 in downtown Pascagoula with a shotgun at point-blank range.

—Clinton Jason Moffitt of Hickory Flat, who was convicted in June 2009 of conspiracy to commit voter fraud. Moffitt was among 16 people indicted on fraud charges stemming from the 2007 elections in Benton County. In July 2009, Moffitt was sentenced to five years in prison with two years to serve, two suspended and one under house arrest.

—Victor Collins, who was convicted of fatally beating his girlfriend, Peggy Campbell, in Marshall County in 1994 after Collins was released from jail on the larceny charges Campbell had filed against him.

Perhaps the most unusual use of clemency powers during Barbour's administration came in 2010, when he released two sisters on the condition that one donate a kidney to the other.

Jamie and Gladys Scott had served nearly 16 years of their life sentences for an armed robbery when they were released from a prison in central Mississippi on Jan. 7, 2011. Barbour granted Jamie Scott an early release because she suffers from kidney failure. He agreed to let Gladys Scott go because she came up with the idea of giving her sister a kidney.

Civil rights advocates claim the sisters, who are black, had been given overly harsh sentences.

Not long after their release, the sisters, who had moved to Pensacola, Fla., said the operation was on hold until one of them quit smoking and they could lose a combined 160 pounds.

The sisters' attorney, Chokwe Lumumba, said Tuesday that one of the sisters has to lose more weight before doctors will perform the operation. Lumumba said he had asked Barbour for a full pardon, but did not get a response.

"There should be no impediments to it. They have been working. They are in school. They have been doing everything they are supposed to do," Lumumba said.

The sisters were not pardoned, according to the list released Tuesday.

Barbour is a conservative who considered running for president in this year's GOP primary, before deciding against it. Like many Republicans, Barbour has taken a tough stance on crime at times. But he also signed legislation in 2008 that made thousands of nonviolent inmates eligible to be considered for parole after serving a portion of their sentence. That legislation was aimed at easing crowded conditions in the state's prisons and saving money.

The men and women on death row have not benefited from the governor's clemency power under Barbour. Nine men were executed during his time in office. He spared none on death row.
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smartyculottes
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January 11, 2012
Boss Hogg gave pardons like Oprah gave away cars. "You get a pardon! You get a pardon! And YOU get a pardon!" But give the former guv credit: he didn't discriminate: most of the people he let out of prison murdered someone in a variety of ways, so there's that.
ultracreep
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January 11, 2012
I don't have much of a problem with this, but I'm from the "an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth leaves everyone blind and toothless" camp. Most people who kill, especially those who commit crimes of passion, do not typically murder again. Before anyone says it, yes, I would feel the very same if it were my loved one who was murdered. I would want some form of punishment and rehabilitation, unless it had been found that the person was simply a psychotic serial killer and would never be safe in society. At some point, we have strayed from any form of rehabilitation for criminals in favor of longer and longer prison stays which accomplish nothing but to drain our pockets and teach people to be better criminals.

There was a time when we thought that people could make mistakes, sometimes horrible ones, and yet be redeemed. No more. While it is true that some people, like the aforementioned serial killers as well as pedophiles are unable to be reintroduced into society, I think that you'll find the average crime of passion or robbery murderer does not fit into that category. However, we as a country enjoy howling for blood, so I expect to hear much moaning about this for months to come.
Dweisel
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January 11, 2012
How about Harry Bostick, one of the recidivist DUIsters Pig Boy pardoned yesterday? He got the news while he was in jail awaiting revocation for another DUI. This one in Pontotoc County. An 18 year old woman died.

According to the Mississippi State Highway Patrol, Smith, who was driving a 1997 Buick LeSabre, was attempting to enter U.S. 278 when a west-bound 2010 Ford F-150, driven by Harry Bostick, 55, Oxford, collided with her vehicle.

I guess he hasn't quite been born-again. Maybe after he kills a few more he'll come around. He's a retired federal agent, which makes him immune from the same laws as you and I are obliged to follow. He may be out celebrating his pardon right now. Look out!
Johnl
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January 11, 2012
Deweisel is a muslum and a coward, big words and no substance....can't understand questions...snicker snicker

panther68
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January 11, 2012
Dweisel may be ranting, raving and throwing tantrums, but can anyone honestly say that what Barbour has done in his last days is not utterly despicable? These actions not only undermine the criminal justice system, they also devestate law enforcement officials and prosecutors (to say nothing about what it does to these victims) who have to work increasingly harder to explain to victims and their families how these things can happen with no recourse or remedy. There is no way these victims can be persuaded that they have not been betrayed, because they have been. Barbour may have been one of the greatest politicians in this state, but his legacy should not be as a statesman because he either does not believe in or does not care about our system of justice. Surely, investigations of potential corruption are warranted here and if he himself is not prosecuted, this should dog him the rest of his lfe.
FriendofJustice
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January 11, 2012
I agree. I don't know Dweisel or John or anyone else posting. I DO know that we as a state have been hoodwinked by our governor. It is despicable and such a disgrace to the office of governor of this great state!

And if anyone out there believes that all of these folks were truly rehabilitated and worthy of their pardons, you are deceiving yourself.

There ARE people who are wrongly imprisoned. And there are people who commit a crime that is not characteristic of their behavior and maybe have been punished enough and rehabilitated. But no way all the folks on that list fit into either category.

I wish folks in South Mississippi would storm his house, tar and feather him, drive him across the bridge in Vicksburg and leave him. But I would hate to do that to another state. . .maybe there is an island somewhere in the Mississippi River where they could leave him. . .
americasgone
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January 11, 2012
Dweisel you can always go back to the land of squint eyes and then you wouldn't have to dirty yourself amongst the white folk.

Do us all a favor and get yourself some medication for these tantrums of yours.
msu-tupelofan
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January 11, 2012
This is Ross Perot's fault. yeah.......
Dweisel
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January 11, 2012
Here's a question for all you Republicans out there (and I confess to having voted a straight Republican ticket most of my life).

If Ronnie Muskrat had done this, pardoned 200 violent criminals, would the US Attorney's office have indicted him? Cf. the beef plant case, where the prosecution asserted that no quid pro quod was required.

Second question: what part if any did Whaley the Pig Boy's lawyer, the new Mrs. Gray Tollison, former Democrat turned Republican have in the deals?

Third question: is Mississippi more or less corrupt than it was 50 years ago? (Hint: more)

The problem with official corruption is that without reliable independant courts there is no rule of law. No rule of law means an end to foreigners buying treasury obligations, investing here. Such an event means the end of this country as an economic powerhouse. Forget the moral stuff. I'm a true conservative, all I care about is the money. I'd like it to be worth something at least until I spend all mine.

Haliley Barbour's Mississippi makes Zimbabwe look like Norway.
SouthernAmerican
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January 11, 2012
Dewisel, are you a coward? Are you a Muslim? Do you eat bacon? Looks like Johnl is a better man than you....
Johnl
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January 11, 2012
Dewisel, with all that education(that white Americans paid for) you still can't answer a simple question. And I am not overweight, and my kids are not worthless. Where do you get your info? How do you know all these things. You Sir, and I use that term loosley, are a racist
earlwayne
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January 11, 2012
Former Gov. Ronnie Musgrove used that power once during his term, pardoning an inmate serving time for the possession of marijuana. He did, though, reward 26 inmates with either suspension of sentences, commutation of sentences or restoration of civil rights, with seven of those convicted of either murder or manslaughter.
virrob2
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January 11, 2012
30 years ago the going rate for a pardon from the Governor was $10,000.00. I wonder what the rate is now.
justamerican
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January 11, 2012
"Concerned citizens" give a pardon to baby murderers before they kill the first baby, and they kill thousands every year. Yet they judge harshly when someone else is forgiven.

Glad I'm not the one that gives final judgement.

Consider your own ways.
Dweisel
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January 11, 2012
I'm considering my own ways American. I haven't killed my wife, girl friend, mom, a bank teller. Haven't raped anyone, sold any dope, burgled any houses, kidnapped anybody. I am not an armed robber, recidivist drunk driver, DUI killer of two doctors in Jackson or of a lovely young girl in Oxford.

In short I am just a regular guy blundering through life wondering how many millions this indescribable vermin two legged pig former governor made on his last day in office.

This comment is not about forgiveness it's about official corruption. There's a difference. Forgiving is not the same as taking money to pardon a violent criminal while professing to be a "law and order" public official who sanctimoniously (some would say blasphemously) invoked Jesus' name refusing to commute a convict's death sentence -- presumably because that killer's family couldn't afford the pardon fee.
Johnl
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January 11, 2012
Dewisel, your vote dont count...You are an American hating muslum......sit down and shut up.
Dweisel
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January 11, 2012
I don't hate all Americans, only morbidly obese white trash moral degenerate folks with poor dentition, dysfunctional marriages and loser kids, like you and Whaley the Pig Boy.

Spend some of your money and learn how to read and write English. Loser.
Johnl
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January 11, 2012
Dewisel, sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me....Still don't think you are man enough to stand in front of pig boy or me and say these things.... Hiding behind a screen name makes you a muslum coward. enjoy your bacon this fine morning
JANGA
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January 11, 2012
I do not agree with the pardons...but I doubt that many of those pardoned had tremendous amounts of money to pay (Except IRBY...she has waaaay to much money and a husband that can get away with anything now that he has been ruled CRAZY)

Also Dweisel...you seem to tick people off...you did so when you went under the handle WTFdude.
FriendofJustice
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January 10, 2012
I do not consider myself Republican or Democrat these days - seems both parties have become little more than caricatures of the worst of us as a society. But this defies logic and reasoning - no matter your political persuasions. I am dumbfounded.



Nine men have been executed on his watch. I know of at least three on death row who should not be there.

And he pardons the likes of Karen Irby. It is sickening. I can't think of another word for it.

Sickening. Disgusting.
DosChiChis
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January 10, 2012
Good and Moral Republicans, they are. Ms will be pushed 20 more years back with the next "slick" in office. Barbour did everything he could to benefit one person, himself. The State of Ms and it's laws have and are for sale. Contact Haley for details. Now yall figure out some way to blame Obama for this.