Wolf push to commute life sentences hits hangup in Delaware County case

Wolf push to commute life sentences hits hangup in Delaware County case

The Wolf Administration’s plan to tackle life sentences for certain offenders has hit a snag in the case of at least one man, who is being taken back into custody on a 27-year-old shoplifting charge in a case that has garnered nationwide attention.

David Sheppard served over 25 years for serving as a lookout in the murder of a pharmacy owner in Philadelphia’s Overbrook neighborhood. His sentence was one of eight commuted last week by Wolf as part of a push both to empower the state’s Board of Pardons and pursue criminal justice reforms.
Tuesday, December 10, 2019/Author: Andrew Bahl
Categories: News and Views
Photo Gallery: In packed ceremony Wolf, Fetterman light Capitol Christmas tree

Photo Gallery: In packed ceremony Wolf, Fetterman light Capitol Christmas tree

A slate of dignitaries, including Gov. Tom Wolf, First Lady Frances Wolf and Lt. Gov. John Fetterman kicked off the Capitol's holiday festivities Monday by lighting the rotunda Christmas tree.

The annual ceremony was replete with the Bishop McDevitt High School choir, speeches from Wolf and others and even an appearance from Santa Claus. The 18-foot tree, supplied by a farm in Lehighton, Carbon County, is adorned with almost 1,600 ornaments from preschool students and senior citizens.

Monday, December 9, 2019/Author: Andrew Bahl
Fetterman advocates for second chances, criminal justice reform at press club luncheon

Fetterman advocates for second chances, criminal justice reform at press club luncheon

Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman wasn’t the only speaker at Monday’s Pennsylvania Press Club luncheon. Despite being listed as the event’s featured guest, Fetterman was joined by two commutations specialists from his office who — until just recently — were serving life sentences in Pennsylvania prisons.

 

For Fetterman, who has championed a number of reforms to the pardons process since being sworn in as lieutenant governor in January, the presence of George Trudel and Naomi Blount represented the possibilities that can come when incarcerated individuals receive a second chance.

Monday, November 25, 2019/Author: Justin Sweitzer
Categories: News and Views
F&M poll: Majority of voters support red-flag bill, expanding background checks

F&M poll: Majority of voters support red-flag bill, expanding background checks

80 percent of voters strongly or somewhat favor legislation that would allow courts to take control of a person’s weapons if a judge determines them to be a risk to themselves or others, according to a new poll from Franklin and Marshall University released Thursday.

That number, however, falls to 66 percent when voters are informed a gun owner might “temporarily lose their firearms before they can represent themselves in court,” a gap which illustrates the difficult landscape gun control activists must face in the state.
Thursday, October 31, 2019/Author: Andrew Bahl
Categories: News and Views
With legalization in doubt, Democrats eye expedited pardons for marijuana convictions

With legalization in doubt, Democrats eye expedited pardons for marijuana convictions

Last week, Republican leaders in the General Assembly were clear about their stance on legalizing recreational marijuana in Pennsylvania: it’s not happening anytime soon.

 

And while Democrats will likely continue to levy pressure on their GOP colleagues, one state board plans to act on its own to provide relief to those with weighed down by consequences from past marijuana convictions.

Monday, September 30, 2019/Author: Justin Sweitzer
Categories: News and Views
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