By DAVE COLLINS, Associated Press
EAST LYME, Conn. (AP) _ A woman who has been in prison for 27 years for killing an expectant mother said Wednesday that she is deeply remorseful as she pleaded at a rare state clemency hearing for her early release.
The hearing for Bonnie Jean Foreshaw at Gates Correctional Institution in East Lyme was the second clemency hearing granted by the Board of Pardons and Paroles in the last decade.
“I never intended to kill anybody,” Foreshaw said. “The remorse I feel cannot be conveyed in words.”
The board is expected to make a decision Wednesday, and Foreshaw could be freed later in the day if she is granted clemency, state officials said. The board also could deny clemency or approve her release at a later date, officials said.
The 66-year-old Foreshaw, a former Bloomfield resident born in Jamaica, is serving a 45-year prison sentence for premeditated murder in the 1986 killing of Joyce Amos in Hartford. She is scheduled to be freed in August 2017 including time off for good behavior, but her lawyer is seeking her immediate release.
Amos’ mother, Betty Gibson, testified against Foreshaw’s early release. She said the family was devastated by Amos’ death.
“To lose a child, there’s no hurt above that,” she said.
Foreshaw’s supporters say she didn’t get a fair trial and should have been charged with the lesser crime of manslaughter and freed years ago because she shot Amos by accident. They say a man was threatening Foreshaw and pulled Amos in front of himself when Foreshaw pulled a gun and fired.
Court rulings in Foreshaw’s appeals, however, say she had a chance to walk away from the argument with the man and did leave the scene but went to her car and returned with the gun.
Deputy Chief State’s Attorney Len Boyle said at the hearing Wednesday that the shooting was not self-defense.
(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)