DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — Alabama has a new parole system in place and Bureau of Pardons and Paroles Director Charlie Graddick has urged board members to use caution in considering parole for violent offenders.
However, not everyone views the new strict policy as a positive thing.
In September, Alabama delayed a chance at freedom for hundreds of prisoners by canceling all scheduled parole and pardon hearings to “ensure compliance” with a law that went into effect on September 1, which introduced new requirements for notifying victims prior to pardon and parole hearings.
“I think what’s going on now with the parole system is bad,” said Pastor Kita Moss, a former inmate turned preacher. “Simply because you cannot judge a book by its cover. You cannot judge a person by one bad decision, just because a person did something today doesn’t mean they’ll do the same thing tomorrow.”
Last Tuesday, the Board of Pardons and Paroles denied parole for 14 violent offenders who are in prison for armed robbery.
“The parole system is designed true enough to make sure that we don’t let out the wrong people,” Moss said. “It’s also designed to let out the people that has been rehabilitated, and that has done 20 and 30 and 40 years that needs that one chance or the one opportunity to go out to make a difference because we never know.”
Moss said you don’t who a person could be unless they are given an opportunity.
“We should be more loving,” Moss said. “We should get back to our Christian values of love and forgiveness because one thing about it, it was me today, it could be you tomorrow, and the truth of the matter is all of us are never except from one bad choice.”
Moss also said that he believes society has a large part in helping with the recidivism of inmates once they are released.
Moss is a published author who has written on his path to redemption. His and his wife’s Shawanda latest book, “Relationship Therapy,” deals with navigating the romance as a couple.