Inmate petitions for early release
By Staff Reports
Published in News on November 5, 2012 1:46 PM
A Mount Olive man convicted in 1993 of killing his wife is asking Gov. Beverly Perdue for clemency before she leaves office.
Elwood Goodson Jr., has submitted the necessary paperwork to the governor's Office of Executive Clemency. According to a letter sent to Goodson's family, the governor's office has received the submission and will notify them when a decision has been made.
Goodson, 66, was found guilty in Wayne County Superior Court of shooting his wife, Luwane Faye Goodson, during an argument in their car on their way home from a bar on the night of Nov. 12, 1992. After the shooting, Goodson drove directly to the Mount Olive Police Station to inform police of what happened.
Goodson said that he and his wife had fought inside the car and that the shooting was accidental. But a jury disagreed. The case was appealed to the state Court of Appeals on the grounds that the court made a number of errors.
The Court of Appeals found no errors and affirmed the decision.
A similar plea for clemency brought before former Gov. Jim Hunt in 2001 received no answer. It was accompanied by a petition signed by hundreds of local residents.
Governors are often asked to grant clemency in certain cases before they leave office.
Goodson, who was sentenced to life in prison, will be eligible for parole next year under the sentencing guidelines in place at the time of his conviction. But family members, who maintain he did not get a fair trial, said they are hoping the governor will go ahead and grant clemency for Goodson before any more time passes.