Wednesday, December 29, 2010

End Parole for Cop Killers

Officer Albert Claggett
On June 26, 1978, a 15-year-old criminal brutally gunned down two Prince George's County, Maryland, police officers. Officer Albert Claggett was booking the youth on a theft charge when the boy gained control of Officer Claggett's service weapon and shot him. He then shot Officer James Swart as he walked into the booking room seconds later.

Amazingly, the boy was convicted of only one count of manslaughter - for the murder of Officer Claggett. He was found not guilty by reason of insanity for Officer Swart's murder.

Officer James Swart
To add insult to injury, this double cop-killer was paroled after serving only 17 of his 25 year sentence. The community loved him. The media glorified him. And, as is no surprise to anyone reading this article, this "reformed, model prisoner" continued his life of violent crime upon his release. Thankfully, the next time he was cornered by police after robbing a bank he killed himself instead of turning the gun on the pursuing officers.

The only good that came out of this heinous crime was that this criminal's actions was the catalyst for the creation of Concerns of Police Survivors in 1984, and his subsequent early release and glorification by the media was what spurned me to create the Officer Down Memorial Page in January 1996.

Fast forward to December 26, 2010, in Woburn, Massachusetts. On a snowy night during a rush for after-Christmas sales, a lifelong criminal was prowling the streets a free man after being paroled from his three life sentences. Along with two accomplices, this lowlife walked into a busy department store and robbed the jewelry counter at gunpoint. As he fled the store he was confronted by 34-year police veteran Officer John Maguire. During the ensuing exchange of shots both Officer Maguire and the lifelong criminal were killed.

Officer John Maguire
Parole for killers, especially cop killers, needs to end for good. They are a danger to society and a lethal threat to police officers nationwide. Officer Maguire certainly wasn't the first, and sadly, he won't be the last police officer to be taken from us by a parolee.

In 2011 the ODMP will be launching a No Parole for Cop Killers initiative that will engage the entire law enforcement community to band together to fight the release of any cop killer who is eligible for parole. Please vow to join us in ensuring cop killers fulfill their entire sentences and don't set foot outside a prison wall a single day too early.


  1. What does this tell U? That there's a hle in the system somewhere & it needs to be fixed because if we don't get a hold of it now, we're gonna have too many parolled murderers out on the streets whom are gonna kill again, just like child molesters, neither should be parolled. Let's re-open Alcatraz for the two types of monsters!!!! I lost the love of my life while he was on duty one night & was shot in the face & died before he reached the hospital & the animal that killed him was a parolled man & had a rap sheet that threw red flags up everywhere. It wasn't his first run in with the law, but it's his last, he's on death row in TN. Thank God, but it's too late for Mark. RIP sweetheart~~~

  2. Well done, I back this initiative 110%!

  3. Wow what a sad story and one that certainly could have been avoided. We read about these stories entirely too much and not just LEO's but on society as a whole. We need to ban together not just LEO's but all citizens to ensure these stories don't continue.

  4. No parole for cop killers, child molesters, and murderers! Let it begin here. Let it be!

  5. Let's not forget officer Ryan Bonaminios brutal murder on Nov 7th, whose suspect is none other than an early release parolee who has served time for various felonies including assault on a peace officer. Something needs to change, and the time is now for us to start protecting those who protect us every day.

  6. I am 100% behind this! As the widow of EOW 3/15/75, Winnebago County Detective Michael Mayborne, Rockford, IL. we have fought the ILPRB every year for 30 years as they have TRIED to parole Mike's killer, Theodore Bacino, a career criminal! As President of and watchdog for the PRB, we strongly support this issue.

  7. This is a crime against society and We don't get it. When we parole a cop killer or even someone who assaults a LEO, we are in effect sending a message that it is OK to do what the criminal does.
    I am a LEO and it is a fact of life for us that society as a whole sees us as the bad guys who only harrass the public, when what we should be doing is catching the dope dealers--murderers-- you can fill in the blank.
    Be aware, it is only a matter of time before California starts it's mass parole for criminals. The supreme court will see to that. It is a scary time we live in... be prepared and don't be caught unaware!
    Be safe out there...

  8. The career criminal who killed the Georgia State Trooper on 12/28/10 had been arrested 18 times in 11 years prior to being arrested for murdering Trooper LeCroy. The perp also had multiple felony convictions. His last arrest was on 12/11/10. He posted 19k bond for possession of cocaine (a favorite charge of his) and other charges--against the recommendation of pre-trial investigators. How many times can a perp be put back out on the streets before he or she kills an officer. Lessons should not be learned with our blood.

  9. I had a friend who was a very decent and dedicated police officer in Akron, OH. He came to my birthday party one year, and the next time I saw him was in his casket. The person responsible is now back on the street and really doesn't care what happened.

  10. August 6, 1970...Officer Richard Huerta, San Jose PD, is shot and killed on a car stop, by someone unrelated to the stop. His killer, Emile Thompson, comes up for parole every 4 years. His next hearing will be sometime around April 2012. My letter opposing his parole will be sent to the Department of Pardons and Parole and the DA handling the case, as it has every 4 years. No cop killer should ever see daylight again. I support this initiative 1000%!

  11. Congratulations Chris, from you friends at The Thin Blue Line