Brown has been imprisoned since 2004 after being convicted of murdering real estate agent John Allen. At the time the now 30-year-old said she was being trafficked by the victim. She was just 16 years old.
In a news release announcing the pardons, Haslam said, “I am pleased to grant these acts of clemency.” Adding, “These individuals have made positive contributions to their communities and deserve pardons, or are individuals who will receive another chance to become contributing members of society by virtue of their commutations.”
Altogether Haslam pardoned seven people and reduced the sentences of four others. Many believed Brown would be included in that count given that earlier this month Haslam said he was reviewing the case following a Tennessee Supreme Court decision to have the juvenile offender serve 51 years in prison.
Legislators from the state have urged Haslam to grant clemency, reminding the governor who leaves office next month, that Brown was a minor at the time of Allen’s killing, and believes to have been a victim of sex trafficking.
Despite the pleas and petitions, Haslam’s decision not to grant clemency suggests he’s still weighing the case. On the same day of his announcement, the lead detective in the case asked the outgoing governor not to act in Brown’s favor. In a letter shared with ABC-affiliate WKRN, he wrote, “my findings were that she was not justified in killing the man and her only motivation for the murder was robbery.”
Haslam is expected to make a decision on the case by next month.
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