Wed August 19, 2009
Frankfort, KY – The Kentucky Supreme Court has heard oral arguments regarding a hotly-debated early release program for state prison inmates. Kentucky Public Radio's Tony McVeigh was in the courtroom.
Seven thousand Kentucky prison inmates and parolees are now free under the early release program, which is based on parole credits. Efforts by the attorney general to block the program reached the supreme court, where this exchange occurred between Chief Justice John Minton and Assistant Attorney General Hays Lawson.
"Part of what Judge Shepherd's point is, to shut the barn door, it's way too late. And that's part of the equitable consideration, is it not? Well, if the DOC is violating the law, I don't see that's a reason, if nine cows have already gotten out, to let the 10th cow go."
Lawson wants the high court to reverse Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd, who refused to grant a temporary injunction blocking the early release program until the merits of the case are argued. There was no immediate ruling from the high court.