Iowa governor holds hearing on releasing killer

Published On: Mar 26 2013 02:20:53 PM CDT
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) -

Iowa's governor has called a rare public hearing to get input on whether he should free an inmate who most agree has turned his life around after spending 38 years in prison for murder.

The Iowa Board of Parole, the prosecutor who convicted him and the judge who oversaw his trial all agree Rasberry Williams should have his life sentence commuted so he can be released on parole.

They say the 66-year-old has been a model inmate who's mentored young offenders, warned young people to stay out of trouble, and helped save the lives of prison guards taken hostage by another inmate.

Gov. Terry Branstad's aides will hear Wednesday from residents in Waterloo, where the 1974 shooting happened. The governor has until May 4 to decide.