Families of victims wary of Alabama mass inmate release

Families of victims react to inmate mass release
Published: Jan. 31, 2023 at 9:03 PM CST|Updated: Feb. 1, 2023 at 6:31 AM CST
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Victims’ families have expressed concerns about the announced early release of a number of Alabama inmates this week. Some are fearful these inmates will be back on the streets again committing crimes.

A feeling that recently became a reality for one north Alabama family.

Miracle Scott’s sister Alexis Garth was shot and killed during a domestic dispute on New Year’s Day. The alleged shooter, Ky’ruan Yarbrough, was released early, just a month before Garth’s death.

In 2019, Yarbrough was convicted on an assault charge related to a prior shooting.

“I’m still not used to her not being around,” Scott said. “It’s just really a new normal, hard to get used to,” she said.

Yarbrough was granted a mandatory release by the Alabama Department of Corrections.

“He did what he had to do for the most part for the first couple of weeks,” she said. “Then he shot my sister.”

While Yarbrough’s previous early release has nothing to do with the latest prisoner release, Scott says it should severe as a reminder to the parole board.

“Family members of those incarcerated want their loved ones to be out in the free world,” she said, “On the other hand, you have me and my family [where] a person who was with my sister got out early under the same conditions and did what he had to do to stay under the radar. In the end, he showed who he really was.”

State Director of the Bureau of Pardons and Parole Cam Ward said preparations are in place to make sure this does not happen.

“We feel like we’re very prepared for it,” he said. “Our officers have been training on it to come up with a protocol on electronic monitoring so if someone pings at 3:30 in the morning, we have someone on call. Saturday night, we have someone on call that arrests you if you violate the terms of it.”

He said the main goal of the bureau is to eliminate repeat offenders.

“We monitor based on what’s the risk they’ll do the crime again,” he said. “That’s the key. What are the odds of them committing another crime? As that risk goes up, the increase in monitoring and supervision goes up.”

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