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RFK assassin Sirhan Sirhan wins parole with support of 2 Kennedys

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is sirhansirhan-1.jpgCalifornia Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation via AP

Associated Press

Richmond Times Dispatch

SAN DIEGO (AP) — U.S. Sen. Robert F. Kennedy’s assassin was granted parole Friday after two of RFK’s sons spoke in favor of Sirhan Sirhan’s release and prosecutors declined to argue he should be kept behind bars.

The decision was a major victory for the 77-year-old prisoner, though it does not assure his release.

The ruling by the two-person panel at Sirhan’s 16th parole hearing will be reviewed over the next 90 days by the California Parole Board’s staff. Then it will be sent to the governor, who will have 30 days to decide whether to grant it, reverse it or modify it.

Douglas Kennedy, who was a toddler when his father was gunned down in 1968, said he was moved to tears by Sirhan’s remorse and he should be released if he’s not a threat to others.

“I’m overwhelmed just by being able to view Mr. Sirhan face to face,” he said. “I think I’ve lived my life both in fear of him and his name in one way or another. And I am grateful today to see him as a human being worthy of compassion and love.”

The New York senator and brother of President John F. Kennedy was a Democratic presidential candidate when he was gunned down June 6, 1968, at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles moments after delivering a victory speech in the pivotal California primary.

Sirhan, who was convicted of first-degree murder, has said he doesn’t remember the killing.

His lawyer, Angela Berry, argued that the board should base its decision on who Sirhan is today.

Prosecutors declined to participate or oppose his release under a policy by Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón, a former police officer who took office last year after running on a reform platform.

Gascón, who said he idolized the Kennedys and mourned RFK’s assassination, believes the prosecutors’ role ends at sentencing and they should not influence decisions to release prisoners.

That decision is best left to board members who can evaluate whether Sirhan has been rehabilitated and can be released safely, Gascón told The Associated Press earlier this year. Relitigating a case decades after a crime should not be the job of prosecutors, even in notorious cases, he said.

Sirhan has served 53 years for the murder of the New York senator and brother of President John F. Kennedy. RFK was a Democratic presidential candidate when he was gunned down at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles moments after delivering a victory speech in the pivotal California primary.

Sirhan, a Christian Palestinian from Jordan, has acknowledged he was angry at Kennedy for his support of Israel.

When asked about how he feels about the Middle East conflict today, Sirhan broke down crying and temporarily couldn’t speak.

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

Sirhan said he doesn’t follow what’s going on in the region but thinks about the suffering of refugees.

“The misery that those people are experiencing. It’s painful,” Sirhan said.

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

Sirhan said he was too old to be involved in the Middle East conflict and would detach himself from it.

“The same argument can be said or made that I can be a peacemaker, and a contributor to a friendly nonviolent way of resolving the issue,” Sirhan said.

Paul Schrade, who was wounded in the shooting, also spoke in favor of his release.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who has spoken in favor of Sirhan’s release in the past, wrote in favor of paroling Sirhan.

[…]

Via https://richmond.com/news/national/rfk-assassin-sirhan-sirhan-wins-parole-with-support-of-2-kennedys/article_63d097d5-c6b2-51ba-add0-b1e6dff0a830.html

3 thoughts on “RFK assassin Sirhan Sirhan wins parole with support of 2 Kennedys

  1. What nonsense. Sirhan did not kill RFK. He was killed by one of his security detail men who shot him in the back several times. The bullets from Sirhan’s gun did not hit Kennedy.

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  2. Pingback: #RFK assassin #Sirhan Sirhan wins parole with support of 2 #Kennedys | | truthaholics

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