Oklahoma parole board OKs largest-ever US mass commutation
The Associated Press - November 2, 2019 7:27 pm
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – Oklahoma will release more than 400 inmates after a state panel approved what they say is the largest single-day mass commutation in U.S. history.
The Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board unanimously approved the commutations Friday, and Gov. Kevin Stitt said that his office would process the recommendations for final approval. The 462 inmates are expected to leave prison on Monday.
Voters approved a state question in 2016 that reclassified simple drug possession and low-level property crimes as misdemeanors instead of felonies. Stitt signed a bill earlier this year that applied those sentences retroactively.
Pardon and Parole board head Steve Bickley says that the mass release is the most on one day since former President Barack Obama commuted the drug sentences of 330 federal prisoners on his last day in office.