02/17/05 — Kerr asks that parole be denied

View Archive

Kerr asks that parole be denied

By Gene Price
Published in News on February 17, 2005 2:14 PM

State Sen. John H. Kerr has written the state Post Release Supervision and Parole Commission asking that convicted murderer Garfield Noah Prevette not be paroled.

Kerr told Commissioner Charles Mann that "a number of people in the Goldsboro community" had contacted him expressing their concern over Prevette's possible release.

Prevette was sentenced to "life plus 40 years" in 1984 for the murder and kidnapping of 61-year-old Goldie Jones in her home. She had been bound and sexually mutilated with a pair of scissors.

The victim had befriended Prevette as part of her voluntary prison ministry.

Kerr noted in his letter to parole officials that Prevette was on parole at the time he killed Ms. Jones.

The 40-year sentence for kidnaping was set aside by the state Supreme Court two years after the trial. Under today's Structured Sentencing law, Prevette would never have been eligible for parole on a life sentence.

But under the "Fair Sentencing" doctrine in effect at that time, a person sent to prison "for life" is automatically eligible for parole consideration after 20 years.

Prevette has been convicted of numerous crimes. He had been sentenced to "a minimum of 12 years" for attempted rape of an elderly woman less than five and a half years before murdering the Goldsboro woman.

Department of Correction records show he has committed 13 "infractions" while behind bars.

The News-Argus on February 9 published the story of Prevette's eligibility for parole. It also carried an editorial urging public officials, civic groups and private citizens to join in demanding that he remain in jail for the rest of his life.

A number of individual citizens have shared with the newspaper copies of letters they have sent to the Parole Commission. Sen. Kerr is the only elected official to share a copy of his correspondence to the Parole Commission with the newspaper. The Parole Commission address is 4222 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, 27699-4222. Mrs. Juanita Baker is chairman of the commission.