Barbour Pardons Two More Woman Killers | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Barbour Pardons Two More Woman Killers

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Gov. Haley Barbour's going-away present for Mississippi is to put a trio of convicted murderers back out on our streets, including two more who brutally murdered the women in their lives.

Sunday, Barbour pardoned David Glenn Gatlin. In 1993, Gatlin murdered his estranged wife, Tammy Ellis Gatlin, reportedly shooting her while she was holding their 2-month-old infant. He then shot Randy Walker, who survived. A Rankin County judge sentenced Gatlin to life in prison for murder, plus additional time for aggravated assault and burglary in 1994.

The Associated Press is reporting that he has also pardoned Anthony McCray, convicted in 2001 of killing his wife.

The Gatlin and McCray pardons raise Barbour's release record for domestic killers--men who have murdered current or former wives and girlfriends--to six. A Jackson Free Press investigation in July 2008 revealed that Barbour granted relief to five killers that year, four of whom killed women.

WAPT reports that Barbour also granted a pardon Sunday to murderer Joseph Ozment, convicted in 1994 for murdering Ricky Montgomery, in addition to armed robbery and conspiracy. He was serving a life sentence for the crimes.

Gatlin and Ozment worked in the governor's mansion as trustys. State law gives the governor free rein to pardon convicts without justification, consultation with the state Parole Board, or prior notification to victims' families. Families of the two killer's victims reported found out about the pardons on Sunday, the day they were released. In Gatlin's case, the Parole Board apparently denied the killer's parole in December.

The governor's office and the Mississippi Department of Corrections have not returned calls.

Read the JFP's full archive of award-winning domestic violence coverage here.

Previous Comments

ID
165690
Comment

It infuriates me that state media are finally reporting on Barbour's penchant for pardoning men who brutally kill women four years after Ronni and Sophie revealed this problem in 2008. Now that he's leaving office, they are willing to stick it to him. That there's some courageous journalism. More like "access journalism." Cheers to the women of the JFP (present and past) who have been diligent on the domestic-abuse beat, especially Ronni Mott. My question: How can 60 percent of the state approve of a governor who lets these brutal murderers walk without even being willing to talk to the families of the victims? What kind of person does that? Seriously?

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2012-01-10T11:22:44-06:00
ID
165691
Comment

When I was writing my column before the holidays, I never imagined it would need to be revised so quickly. My heart is broken. I wish I could say more - or be more eloquent - but I just don't understand this state today.

Author
Whitney
Date
2012-01-10T12:27:20-06:00
ID
165692
Comment

Feel free to write a follow-up on this, Whitney. Your column about Personhood was wonderful.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2012-01-10T12:34:06-06:00
ID
165693
Comment

This one has even a lot of conservatives shaking their heads in disbelief. What a way to go out, giving the women of Mississippi the middle finger.

Author
Jeff Lucas
Date
2012-01-10T13:46:18-06:00
ID
165694
Comment

This is an outrage. Our lawmakers need to take action to remove the governor's authority to pardon killers immediately. It's a shameful tradition for Mississippi governors.

Author
kudzuking
Date
2012-01-10T14:49:46-06:00

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