Chief Prosecutor John Bradley opposed the potential re-release of convicted murderer Shawn Appleby, saying that Appleby had already violated a parole release back in 2014 and that he is not taking the parole process seriously.
Speaking in yesterday’s CNMI Board of Parole meeting, Bradley cited police reports and court documents in pointing out that Appleby had robbed the victim’s store without any pressing circumstances such as financial struggles, and used a gun to do it. “Until he dwells on that mistake, he will not make any progress as he escaped prison twice,” Bradley said.
Citing Department of Corrections documents, Bradley said that Appleby assaulted an inmate in 2007.
He recommended to the board to reject Appleby’s parole application, saying Appleby needs to serve more time in prison.
Appleby is serving a 42-year prison sentence for the murder of Korean store owner Byung Ok Suh in November 1996, and two counts of escaping from prison.
Appleby had told the parole board that he intends to find work and reestablish his relationship with his children. “I believe that I have changed and every day I look at those prison walls, I always think about the mistake that I have done and I can’t take back the life that I have taken,” Appleby told the board.
In officer Jeffrey Quitugua’s testimony to the board, he said that Appleby is an active member of the DOC’s Outreach Program, which teaches inmates skills such as carpentry, plumbing, electrical maneuvering, mechanics, and other skills.
“Although he has broken his parole back in 2014, I believe that he has matured into a better person, understanding that he was just immature at the time, and took the need to better himself to see beyond the prison walls once again,” Quitugua said.
Quitugua also informed the BOP that Appleby has worked with the other inmates to improve themselves and tries to be a role model for the other inmates. He also told the BOP that throughout his tenure of watching over Appleby, he has never encountered an issue with him while doing outreach.
Appleby’s sponsor, Jeffrey Sablan, testified that he is aware of what it takes to become a parole sponsor.
“I have the discipline and understanding that I…plan to implement. …If he does break the rules, I will immediately contact the authorities to bring him back,” Sablan said.
Ignacio Mendiola, the Rota member on the parole board, said that Appleby may have changed in the past five years but the board also has to consider the fact that he escaped prison twice and that he revoked his first parole.
No decision has been made on Appleby’s case as of press time, as the board will continue to deliberate on Appleby and five other parole cases today.