Board Recommends Clemency For Death Row Inmate

    1:46 PM, Aug 5, 2008   |    comments
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    The 4 to 3 vote was delivered to the Governor's Office Tuesday afternoon. Governor Beebe makes the final decision as to whether clemency is granted.

    Voting that the clemency application was with merit was Leroy Brownlee, Abraham Carpenter, Jr., Richard Mays, Jr. and Joseph Peacock. The four affirmative recommendations noted that Williams' sentence should be commuted to life without parole.

    Voting to recommend that the application was without merit was John Felts, Carolyn Robinson and John Belken.

    The Board's recommendation is non-binding upon the Governor who has the final decision in all applications for clemency or a pardon.

    Monday, Williams told a parole board that the world "just went blank" before he shot and killed a farmer at Bradley in 1992.

    However, the family of Clyde Spence says they remember everything and asked board members to allow Williams' scheduled September 9 execution to move forward.

    In a hearing Monday at Varner, Williams told Parole Board members that he had been drinking and smoking marijuana with relatives before Spence was shot. He said he was mad at Spence for not paying him for work he had done.

    Spence's son David told the board at a hearing in Little Rock that his father paid Williams and offered him help and support. David Spence also refuted a claim by Williams' defense lawyers that he was mentally disabled, saying Williams served as a farm foreman and often supervised others.

    Today's THV & The Associated Press

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