Connecticut pauses prison commutations amid uproar

Apr 20, 2023, 2:56 PM | Updated: 3:12 pm

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut has paused granting prison commutations in the wake of an uproar over a drastic rise in the number of inmates having their sentences reduced, the governor announced Thursday.

Conservative lawmakers and victims’ rights advocates had called for the suspension of commutations and a review of the state’s Board of Pardons and Paroles policies after it was revealed that 71 commutations were granted in 2022. Just three were approved between 2017 and 2021.

Those getting sentence reductions included 44 convicted murders, who had an average of 15 years shaved off their sentences, according to lawmakers.

Gov. Ned Lamont, a Democrat, last week replaced the chairman of the parole board and on Wednesday met with leaders of the Legislature’s Judiciary Committee to discuss how the commutations were being handled.

“During the meeting, the leadership of the board informed participants that it has paused the commutation process pending an expeditious review of its policies and processes,” he said in a statement.

Republicans applauded the decision.

“We continue to push for an open and transparent process where every victim, lawmaker, prosecutor and defense attorney has input on how this commutations policy should be revised,” said state Sen. Heather Somers, of Groton. “ We need to decide collectively what that policy is — what is fair, what is just, and what is right.”

Richard Sparaco, the board’s executive director, said the board would review aspects of its policy that drew criticism, including protocols for notifying victims and a rule allowing people denied commutation to reapply after three years, according to Hearst Connecticut Media.

A statement on the board’s website said it would resume accepting commutation applications “within the next few months.”

United States News

FILE - A bottle of Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey is displayed next to a Bad Spaniels dog toy in A...

Associated Press

Ruff day in court: Supreme Court sides with Jack Daniel’s in dispute with makers of dog toy

The Supreme Court on Thursday gave whiskey maker Jack Daniel's reason to raise a glass, handing the company a new chance to win a trademark dispute with the makers of the Bad Spaniels dog toy.

21 hours ago

Associated Press

Louisiana governor says he intends to veto anti-LGBTQ+ bills including ban on gender-affirming care

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, said Thursday he intends to veto a package of bills passed by the GOP-dominated legislature that targets the LGBTQ+ community, including a ban on gender-affirming care for transgender minors and the state’s version of a “Don’t Say Gay” bill. Edwards has said throughout […]

21 hours ago

(Pixabay Photo)...

Associated Press

6 arrested in alleged scheme to fraudulently collect millions in COVID aid meant for renters

Six people from Washington, Arizona and Texas have been arrested and accused of fraudulently obtaining millions of dollars of COVID-19 aid from an assistance program meant for renters, federal prosecutors said.

21 hours ago

FILE - Attorney General Merrick Garland announces Jack Smith as special counsel to oversee the Just...

Associated Press

Trump indicted: What to know about the documents case and what’s next

Donald Trump’s indictment on charges of mishandling classified documents at his Florida estate has brought renewed attention to one of the most notable cases in Justice Department history. The federal charges represent the biggest legal jeopardy so far for Trump, coming less than three months after he was charged in New York with 34 felony […]

21 hours ago

FILE - President Donald Trump sits at his desk after a meeting with Intel CEO Brian Krzanich, left,...

Associated Press

Live updates | Trump Classified Documents Indictment

MIAMI (AP) — Follow along for live updates on indicted on charges of mishandling classified documents at his Florida estate. The Justice Department did not immediately publicly confirm the indictment. ___ What to know: — Signs that Trump could face criminal charges began to pile up this month — Who is Jack Smith, the special […]

21 hours ago

Associated Press

Lawyers blame ChatGPT for tricking them into citing bogus case law

NEW YORK (AP) — Two apologetic lawyers responding to an angry judge in Manhattan federal court blamed ChatGPT Thursday for tricking them into including fictitious legal research in a court filing. Attorneys Steven A. Schwartz and Peter LoDuca are facing possible punishment over a filing in a lawsuit against an airline that included references to […]

21 hours ago

Sponsored Articles



Thank you to Al McCoy for 51 years as voice of the Phoenix Suns

Sanderson Ford wants to share its thanks to Al McCoy for the impact he made in the Valley for more than a half-decade.

(Desert Institute for Spine Care in Arizona Photo)...

Desert Institute for Spine Care in Arizona

5 common causes for chronic neck pain

Neck pain can debilitate one’s daily routine, yet 80% of people experience it in their lives and 20%-50% deal with it annually.

(Photo by Michael Matthey/picture alliance via Getty Images)...

Cox Communications

Valley Boys & Girls Club uses esports to help kids make healthy choices

KTAR’s Community Spotlight focuses on the Boys & Girls Club of the Valley and the work to incorporate esports into children's lives.

Connecticut pauses prison commutations amid uproar