Miss. Judge Quashes Barbour Pardons

Blocks release of 21 still in prison, orders 5 more in for hearing

By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff

Posted Jan 12, 2012 6:57 AM CST

(Newser) – So much for Haley Barbour's grand pardons: A Mississippi judge has put the kibosh on some of the former governor's last-minute spate of 200 pardons, blocking the release of 21 inmates still imprisoned and hauling in five more who had been released for hearings. The ruling came hours after the state's attorney general filed an injunction complaining that some of those pardoned did not post an announcement of their bid for clemency in newspapers in the locations where the crimes occurred—a constitutional requirement, reports Reuters.

Barbour, who left office Tuesday, remained defiant, issuing a statement defending the pardons: "The pardons were intended to allow them to find gainful employment or acquire professional licenses as well as hunt and vote," he said, adding that more than 90% of convicts had already been released when the pardons were issued. An interesting aside: Among those pardoned was one Earnest Scott Favre, brother of Brett, who was convicted in a 1996 drunk-driving crash that killed his best friend.

Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour testifies before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on Capitol Hill June 2, 2011.   (Getty Images)
Gov. Haley Barbour presents his Fiscal Year 2013 Executive Budget Recommendation in Jackson, Miss., Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2011.   (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
Mississippi AG Jim Hood says he believes Gov. Haley Barbour might have violated the state Constitution by pardoning inmates who failed to give sufficient public notice that they were seeking clemency...   (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
In this Dec. 20, 2011 file photo, Gov. Haley Barbour presents his Fiscal Year 2013 Executive Budget Recommendation in Jackson, Miss.   (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis, File)
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