Jefferson City, Mo. - Friday, Governor Eric Greitens signed 77 bills into law.
“Our top priority has always been getting results for the people of Missouri, and our strong agenda has taken Missouri in a new and better direction. Today, I’m proud to put my name on many important laws and bold reforms.
We accomplished a lot this year. We passed the boldest reforms to Missouri’s foster care system in a generation, which the First Lady and so many worked hard for. We succeeded in delivering our tax cuts to create more jobs and higher pay for Missouri families. We passed critical efforts to shrink government by getting rid of useless political appointed positions, and we passed historic state workforce reforms to ensure that good service gets rewarded and that taxpayers get results. Our efforts to expand rural broadband were successful, and we signed bills creating greater access to health care for pregnant women, new benefits for veterans, protections for law enforcement officers from harassment, and expanded access to classes for kids.
The conservative reform agenda is working in Missouri, and I’m proud of what we’ve delivered,” said Governor Greitens.
For the full list of bills, click here.
Governor Greitens also commuted sentences and issued pardons for several Missourians. The Governor released the following statement:
“The ability to make wrong things right, for Missourians who have not gotten fair treatment from our criminal justice system, is one of the most solemn and precious abilities of a Governor. I believe in justice, and I believe that with these actions today—justice will be done.
We have decided to issue 5 pardons, and commute 4 sentences. Their stories each deserve to be told. Today, I want to highlight a few. Jessie McKim is currently serving a life sentence, without the possibility of parole, for a crime he did not commit. He has been behind bars for 20 years. He was convicted of murder, but since then, six experts have concluded that the cause of death identified at the time was completely wrong. Time and truth go hand in hand. It breaks my heart to know that Jessie, and others like him, served a day in prison for now-discredited accusations. We cannot undo what has been done. We cannot give him back that time. What we can do, is give him a chance to start again.
There are also cases of injustice. Alvis Williams was convicted of burglary—stealing a Sony Walkman, VCR, and other electronics—and sentenced to 80 years in prison for a burglary. He has already served 23 years. The prosecutor hoped, at most, to send him away for 20 years. He was sentenced to 80. That is 60 years longer than the prosecutor asked for, and 70 years longer than he could possibly be sentenced today. Alvin Williams has served his time.
These sentences were commuted. We also issued pardons: to wipe a person’s slate clean. It is the ultimate tool for reversing unjust acts, and for recognizing people who are deserving of our state’s mercy.
I pardoned Stacey Lannert today. She served 18 years in prison for killing her father—a father who abused and raped her constantly for years, and kept her silent under threat of death. When Stacey—still a teenager—discovered her father raping her younger sister, she grabbed her father’s gun and shot him dead. Since that day, Stacey has committed her life to serving others. Her sentence was commuted in 2009. She is a public defender. She has been an incredible resource to our team as we have worked in office to determine other Missourians who may deserve grace. She didn’t ask us for a pardon before we decided to issue one, but there is no one more deserving.
Each of the people on this list has a story to tell, and I look forward to each of them having the chance to do that. Each of them has overcome injustice, and many have overcome abuse. Each of them has something to give to this state, and to the world.”
Click here for the complete list of pardons.