Contrary to recent reports – Judith Ann Neelley is NOT eligible for parole – not now – and not in the future. A number of media outlets recently reported that Neelley would be eligible for parole in 2014 – however that is NOT the case.
The confusion stemmed from the fact that a jury had recommended Life in Prison without Parole for Neelley, for the 1982 murder of 13 year old Lisa Ann Millican.
The judge in that case saw things differently, sentencing Neelley to death.
In 1999, Governor Fob James – on his way out of office, commuted the sentence to life in prison, which led to legal wrangling and a great deal of debate over whether or not she would actually be eligible for parole at some point in the future.
The Alabama Department of Corrections had listed Neelley as being up for parole sometime next year – but there was a law passed by the Alabama Legislature back in 2003 designed to make her ineligible for parole.
We’ll have more on this story – including comments from District Attorney Mike O’Dell – in the coming days.