Forty murderers in the state of Louisiana received an early Christmas present this year when outgoing Democrat Governor John Bel Edwards pardoned them. Usually, Democrat governors are not quite this brazen in displaying their hatred toward their own citizens, but Edwards has decided to openly give the voters of Louisiana the finger. There are now 40 convicted murderers walking free in Louisiana because of Edwards. That includes one whose crime was so heinous that he was on death row.
Edwards is term-limited out of office on January 8, 2024. He had campaigned for governor on a promise to reduce the state’s prison population, but this probably isn’t what very many of the voters had in mind. The Republican controlled legislature in Louisiana quickly saw through that promise and realized it was just an offshoot of the “Defund the Police” movement.
After they stalled Edwards’ agenda for so many years, he has now taken his revenge on the people. Between October 11 and December 19, Edwards released 40 cold-blooded murderers back into Louisiana’s communities.
Eleven of the hardened criminals that Edwards free had been convicted of first-degree murder. One of those murderers who is now walking around free is 65-year-old Ricky Washington. Back in 1979, grocery store owner Grady Haynes was working behind the counter when Washington shot him in the back of the head. He would have gotten the death penalty, but the jury didn’t come to a unanimous decision. He received life behind bars instead.
Nick Charles Nicholson, age 60, was sentenced to life in prison for stabbing a convenience store clerk to death in a robbery. The jury found him guilty of stabbing Kelly Ann Gramm to death in 1981. She had 39 stab wounds in her body and the tip of the knife was lodged in her skull. Police found Nicholson in his car, covered in blood, with the cash register on the passenger seat next to him. He’s free now, thanks to John Bel Edwards. Nicholson was released from prison on December 23rd.
Frederick Kirkpatrick is another murderer who is walking free today. He was sentenced to death for the murder of Steve Radoste back in 1982. At his trial, Kirkpatrick claimed that Radoste made sexual advances against him and an accomplice, so they had to use self-defense. It was a novel approach to self-defense, since the bashed Radoste’s head in, stabbed him multiple times, shot him, and then robbed his house before setting it on fire.
That’s not exactly how self defense works. Not even in Louisiana. (We checked.)
If a suspect is convicted of first-degree murder in Louisiana, the district attorney has the option to seek the death penalty. If they don’t receive the death penalty, the law states that they “shall be punished by life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.”
Since parole boards cannot give convicted murderers in Louisiana “time off for good behavior” or any nonsense like that, the only option for them to be freed from prison is a gubernatorial pardon. Based on recidivism rates, it is a guarantee that John Bel Edwards just got one—and probably several—innocent people in Louisiana murdered. It just hasn’t happened yet. The contempt that the Democrat Party has toward innocent people is hard to believe at times. Many elected Democrats are so radical these days that they would prefer to throw the prison doors open entirely.
The only good news for the people of Louisiana is that Edwards is leaving office in a few days. He’ll be replaced by incoming Republican Governor Jeff Landry, who most recently served as the state’s attorney general.