What follows is a sample letter to the U.S. Department of Justice Pardon Attorney. This is the second step in the process to review Peltier’s recently resubmitted clemency application.[i]
Please feel free to add any additional or personal comments supporting the facts and stating that under President Obama’s plan to grant a number of clemencies, commutations and pardons for long-serving nonviolent drug offenses, that Leonard Peltier, a remorseless double-murderer, is the last person who should be considered.
Factual material is available from the NPPA through a search feature on the bottom of the home page in addition to 156 blogs (posted since 11/29/09) with footnotes and supporting references and documentation.
“In the Spirit of Coler and Williams”
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8190 Beechmont Ave. #101
Cincinnati, Ohio 45255-6117
August 10, 2016
Honorable Robert A. Zauzmer
Acting Pardon Attorney, U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, D.C. 20530 -0001
Re: Leonard Peltier – Clemency Petition
Dear Mr. Zauzmer:
This letter expresses my profound opposition to Leonard Peltier’s plea for clemency.
(Please reference my many previous letters to the Pardon Attorney and President Obama dating back to 2009. These letters contained detailed and factual material and references to the actual record of Peltier’s conviction and subsequent appeals. I have received several replies, one from the President and one in particular from former Pardon Attorney Rodgers dated January 13, 2012 where it stated “Your letter will be retained and added to any case file created in the event that Mr. Peltier re-applies for executive clemency in the future.” [Peltier had not reapplied at that time.] These prior communications are crucial to understand the validity of Peltier’s conviction and numerous appeals, that his conviction has been sustained, and that his false alibis and claims of a wrongful conviction are simply without merit.)
I am aware that Leonard Peltier has renewed his application for clemency and that a support group continues to actively encourage his release. I served as a Special Agent with the FBI for thirty years and strongly believe that his petition for Clemency should be denied for many valid reasons.
On June 26, 1975, Peltier was involved in an unprovoked attack on FBI Agents Jack Coler and Ronald Williams while they were searching for a fugitive on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. Both Agents were caught in an open field in a deadly crossfire by members of the American Indian Movement, critically wounded, and then summarily executed at point blank range by Leonard Peltier. Peltier was convicted of their murders receiving consecutive life sentences. During well over a dozen appeals Peltier’s conviction and sentencing has never been altered. Over the years Peltier has made many outrageous and self-incriminating public statements that only serve to reinforce his unrepentant and remorseless guilt, even most recently; “And really, if necessary, I’d do it all over again because it was the right thing to do” (2010), and, “I don’t regret any of this for a minute” (2014).
Peltier has not been a model prisoner. In addition to numerous disciplinary actions, in 1978 he was involved in an armed escape from Lompoc Penitentiary during which shots were fired at prison guards. For this post-conviction criminal act Peltier received an additional seven-year consecutive sentence.
The families, friends and professional associates of Jack and Ron continue to suffer from the loss of two fine young men who were brutally murdered in-the-line-of-duty.
Clemency should be reserved for non-violent offenders who have proven they have been rehabilitated. Peltier has not fulfilled his consecutive life sentences, plus seven years. His crimes were extremely violent and he remains unrepentant and repeatedly boasts about his murderous acts on that horribly infamous day. Leonard Peltier is now seeking consideration and mercy, but he should be shown the same degree of mercy he gave to Jack Coler and Ron Williams, and that would be none.
I respectfully urge you to reject Peltier’s petition and recommend to the President that his application be denied. Thank you for your attention in this very crucial matter.