Monday, August 15, 2022

RFK Assassin 2 gets closer to freedom with Kennedy’s help

San Diego, Calif.—California’s Parole Board on August 27 ordered Robert F. Kennedy’s killer, when two of RFK’s sons said they supported his release and prosecutors refused to argue that he should be put behind bars. But ultimately the governor will decide whether Sirhan Sirhan gets out of jail or not.

Douglas Kennedy was a child when his father was shot and killed in 1968. He told a two-person board panel that he was in tears at Sirhan’s regrets and that the 77-year-old should be released if he did not pose a danger to others.

“I am overwhelmed to be able to see Mr. Sirhan face-to-face,” he said. “I have lived my life in some way or the other in fear of him and his name. And I am grateful to see him today as someone worthy of compassion and love.”

Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who has spoken in favor of Sirhan’s release in the past, has written in favor of Sirhan’s parole. He said in the letter that he had met her in prison and that Sirhan “apologised by holding my hand for the one who cried.”

“While no one can speak for sure on my father’s behalf, I firmly believe that, based on his consummate commitment to fairness and justice, he will be able to release Mr. Sirhan because of Sirhan’s impressive record of rehabilitation.” Will strongly encourage this board,” he said. In the letter submitted to the Board during the hearing

Sirhan Sirhan, convicted of shooting U.S. Sen. Robert F. Kennedy in 1968, arrives for a parole hearing on August 27, 2021 in San Diego, California. (California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation via AP)

Sirhan, whose hair is now gray, thanked the board with a smile and gave a thumbs up after announcing the parole decision. It was a major victory in his 16th attempt on parole. But it does not assure his release.

The decision will be reviewed by the board’s staff over the next 120 days. It will then be sent to the governor, who will have 30 days to decide whether to approve, reverse or amend it. If Sirhan breaks free, he will have to live in a transitional home for six months, enroll in an alcohol abuse program, and receive therapy.

Robert F. Kennedy was a US Senator from New York and the brother of President John F. Kennedy, who was assassinated in 1963. RFK was seeking the Democratic presidential nomination when he was shot at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles. Victory speech in the decisive California primary. Five others were injured.

Yug Times Photos
In this file photo, Sen. Robert F. Kennedy speaks to representatives of the United Auto Workers at a convention hall on May 9, 1968 in Atlantic City, NJ. (AP photo, file)

Sirhan, who insists he does not remember the shooting and was already drinking, was convicted of first-degree murder. He was sentenced to death after his conviction, but that sentence was commuted to life when the Supreme Court of California briefly outlawed the death penalty in 1972.

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At his last parole hearing in 2016, the commissioners concluded after more than three hours of in-depth testimony that Sirhan had not shown sufficient remorse or understood the enormity of his crime.

On Friday, Sirhan said again that he did not remember the murder, but made several attempts to show that he still takes responsibility for the damage he caused.

“Sen. Kennedy was the hope of the world … and I harmed them all and it pains me to experience that, the wisdom for such a terrible deed, if I really did it,” San Diego Sirhan, who appeared on camera from the county jail, said in the virtual proceedings, wearing his blue prison uniform, peeping through his shirt pocket with a paper towel folded as a handkerchief.

Parole Board Commissioner Robert Barton said Sirhan showed he was a different person not only from 1968 but 2016.

“We looked at the improvements you made, and all the other mitigating factors, and we didn’t find that your lack of taking full responsibility for the crime” stands as evidence of what is currently dangerous to society.

Barton said Sirhan had made a concerted effort to follow the board’s suggestions since 2016. This included enrolling in more than 20 programs focused on self-help, controlling your anger and other emotions, Barton said, noting that Sirhan did the same during the coronavirus pandemic. .

Due to laws passed in 2018, the board was required this time to take into account the fact that he had childhood trauma from bombings in the Middle East, committed a crime at a young age and is now an elderly prisoner.

The Board found that despite the magnitude of the offence, he was unlikely to commit the offense again and did not pose an unreasonable threat to public safety.

“Its atrocities, despite its impact, not only on families and victims and on the whole country and probably on the whole world – it would be a different matter if you were sentenced to life without parole, but you were sent with parole. For life,” Barton said.

Barton said the board’s decision was not influenced by the fact that prosecutors did not seek or oppose the release of Sirhan under the policy of Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascon, a former police officer who had filed a reform last year. He took office after walking on stage. Gascon, who said he idolized Kennedy and mourned the killing of RFK, believes the role of prosecutors ends at sentencing and should not influence the decision to release prisoners.

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“Obviously they protested in the past and even if they protested today, our decision will be the same,” Barton said.

The Los Angeles Police Department, relatives of some of the victims, and members of the public submitted letters protesting Sirhan’s release.

The California District Attorney’s Association condemned the prosecution’s absence.

“This is one of the most infamous political murders in American history and the people of California are considering releasing the killer without the benefit of a representative. This is shameful,” said El Dorado County District Attorney Vern Pearson , said the president of the association.

Sirhan’s lawyer, Angela Berry, urged the board to make its decision based on who Sirhan is today, not what he did more than 50 years ago.

Sirhan said he has learned to control his anger and is determined to live in peace.

“You have my pledge. I will always look to safety and peace and non-violence,” he told the panel.

Sirhan, a Palestinian Christian from Jordan, has admitted he was angry at Kennedy for Israel’s support. When asked how he feels about the Middle East conflict today, Sirhan cried and was temporarily unable to speak.

“Take a few deep breaths,” said Barton, who noted that the conflict had not gone away and still touched a nerve.

Sirhan said that he does not follow what is happening in the region but thinks about the suffering of the refugees.

“The misery they are experiencing. It is painful,” said Sirhan.

If released, Sirhan could be deported to Jordan, and Barton said he was concerned that he could become “a symbol or a lightning rod for inciting more violence”.

Sirhan said he was too old to join the Middle East conflict and would distance himself from it.

“The same argument can be said or made that I can be a peacemaker and a contributor to the friendly nonviolent way of solving this issue,” said Sirhan, who told the panel living with his blind brother in Pasadena, Calif. expressed hope.

Paul Schrader, a union leader and RFK aide who was among five injured in the 1968 shooting, also spoke in favor of Sirhan’s release.

The Associated Press


This News Originally From – The Epoch Times

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