Huckabee Granted Tacoma Shooting Suspect Clemency
When Mike Huckabee unexpectedly became a serious contender for the Rep ublican presidential nomination in 2008, at least one of his opponents trotted out a time-honored knock against him: He was soft on crime. Their evidence: As governor of Arkansas, he pressed for a convicted rapist to be granted parole. The man, Wayne Dumond, went on to rape and kill another woman.
Now, as roar grows over a possible Huckabee presidential run in 2012, comes similar news: The main suspect in the slaying of four police officers near Tacoma, Wash. is another person who benefited from Mike Huckabee’s sympathies as governor. Maurice Clemmons was given clemency in Arkansas instead of finishing a lengthy prison sentence. Clemmons has a long criminal record, and was in jail as recently as last week but posted bail.
Though Huckabee has said he’s unlikely to run in 2012, and I certainly wouldn’t be inclined to vote for him if he did, but it’s a shame that he’ll likely take a lot of heat for trying to give a then-17-year-old kid a break. Clemmons was granted clemency more than 20 years ago, and if he did end up playing a role in the horrific killing of the four officers, it will have been because he wasted that chance – not because someone decided to give it to him.