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Missouri Prison Reform received the following message from a resident of a Missouri Prison.

Greetings from Missouri Eastern Correction Ctr. My name is Rod McKown, #39829, and I have been invited to write a blog for MPR. I’m 67 (today no less), and am serving a life sentence for first degree (felony) murder under the old 1979 criminal code (not that this distinc- tion of the law mattered to the Parole Bd.). After seeing the Bd. an absurd thirteen times, four times below my guideline release date and an unconstitutional nine times above my release date without good cause; I was finally granted a two-year outdate. I’m scheduled for release on 11/29/23, and am at the State’s mercy for a place to be paroled to after an absurd 47 years confinement. Why so long? To my best knowledge: victim’s opposition which can never be appeased; a Parole Bd. subservient to such victim’s feelings, and gross Due Process/Ex Post Facto Violations (549.261/13 CSR 80-2.010 et seq. (1979) /217.690/14 CSR 80-2.010 et seq. (1982). According to the Appellate Court, I was the first state prisoner to sue for my “protected liberty interests to parole release” under the mandatory language of 549.261 and its detailed guidelines of 13 CSR 80-2.010 et seq., (twice upheld by the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals in Williams, 661 F.2d 699. (CA8 1981)) , and the Parole Bd. didn’t like it! Let alone repeatedly attempting relief, for myself, and on behalf of the class members of Williams, Id. Additionally, Bd. members didn’t like my subsequent complaints to the Executive and Legislative Branches which was performed routinely and systematically with each subse- quent denial of parole. Suffice it to say, it is obvious, the powers to be retaliated against me vindictively for exercising my rights to the Courts in seeking justice under law, and although my record is not without blemish, I have been a model, if not an exemptionary, prisoner. At 22, I never remotely expected to come to prison as a business owner; but, circumstances – being at the wrong place at the wrong time – cost me my precious freedom! Strong in character, honor and integrity, I chose to make the best of my circumstances and took advantage of virtually every opportunity available. In particular, earning a B.A. – w/Western Illinois; (2) Paralegal Degree(s) Platte College, and Mineral Area College; Business Management./Micro- computer Degree – M.A.C.; and Asst. Medical Lab. Tech. – (VEC)… As such, I detest injustice, needless pain and suffering and incom- petence and have confronted same throughout my life and having become relatively well educated, believe I’m in a unique position to know more about the Department of Corrections than perhaps anybody and can provide some much needed insight as the “DOC IMPLODES” before our very eyes! Rest assured, I truly look forward to sharing with you critical informa- tion you have been denied in the past; and sincerely hope you will be compelled to facilitate a better, more productive, and competent Correction’s system for the best of all concerned. Thank You.

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