Groups demand Quinn explain early release program

January 14, 2010 3:49:52 PM PST
Victims rights groups are demanding that Gov. Pat Quinn explain why he set hundreds of violent criminals free as part of his early prisoner release and other groups are calling for an independent investigation into the program. They claim the governor secretly released more than 1700 criminals from prison before they had served their full terms and without notifying their victims.

"Being a victim doesn't go away. And sometimes the only bit of security you have to want to go outside is knowing that that person that did that awful thing is not out there anymore," said Maria Ramirez, Parents of Murdered Children, Inc.

The groups say Gov. Quinn had previously promised early release of only non-violent offenders to save the state money.

The governor said he met twice with his corrections director to insist that only non-violent criminals be released but his orders were not followed.