Criminal Justice

Inmate released early due to computer glitch is charged with vehicular homicide

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A Washington state inmate who was mistakenly released from prison too early has been charged with vehicular homicide for an accident that occurred when he should have been incarcerated.

The former inmate, Robert Terrance Jackson Jr., was released on Aug. 10, though he should have remained in prison until Dec. 6, report the Seattle Times, the Bellevue Reporter and KOMO News. The accident, which killed Jackson’s 35-year-old girlfriend, Lindsay Hill, occurred on Nov. 11.

“Nothing I can say will bring back Ms. Hill. I deeply regret that this happened,” said Department of Corrections Secretary Dan Pacholke. “On behalf of the Department of Corrections, I apologize.”

Jackson was among more than 3,000 inmates in the state who were released early since 2002 because computer software miscalculated good time credits. As of this date, the state has identified two improperly released inmates who have been accused of crimes since their release, and the Department of Corrections is conducting a further review, the Seattle Times reports.

The problem was discovered in 2012 after a victim’s family questioned the release date of an inmate, but the software fix had not yet been made on Dec. 23, when the state’s governor revealed the problem in a press conference. The Bellevue Reporter says that the target date for the fix is Jan. 7, 2016. Gov. Jay Inslee has ordered that prisoner releases be halted until impacted inmates’ eligibility for release can be verified, according to the Bellevue Reporter.

Related article: Software error led to early release of more than 3,000 inmates; there was no fix despite 2012 notice

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