A high-profile commutation case has prompted the State Parole Board to revise its rules. Kathy Tyler rallied support from several prominent Iowans who spoke at a public hearing, urging the governor to commute the life sentence Tyler received for killing her ex-husband. Parole Board Executive Director Clarence Key says such public hearings weren’t included in the Board’s administrative rules. He says the board wanted to be sure that the hearings did become part of the rules.Key says the Board had the right to hold the Tyler hearings even though there was no provision for them in the Board’s administrative rules.Key can’t say how the change might affect future commutation hearings, as he says each case is different.Governor Vilsack denied Tyler’s request for commutation despite the support of former Governor Robert Ray and others at the public hearing. The Parole Board voted to make the change at its meeting Thursday in Des Moines.
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