Senator Jacobs sponsoring legislation to change rules of state parole system


BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)– In 1980, Richard LaBarbera and Robert McCain sexually assaulted and killed a 16-year-old who was walking within sight of the bar where the two were drinking.

Many are shocked by LaBarbera’s release, considering the brutality of the crime, and the fact that his co-killer was denied parole.

At least LaBarbera won’t be walking the same streets as his victim’s family, who still live in Rockland County.

But, he will be walking the streets of Buffalo.

Senator Chris Jacobs says, “That makes no sense to me. That really points to the fact that the system is broken.”

Jacobs is outraged the state has ordered a convicted killer to relocate to Buffalo and he’s pointing the blame at other state legislators and Governor Andrew Cuomo.

“What bothers me first and foremost is that this murderer was paroled. I don’t think that should happen,” Jacobs said.

A three-member parole board released LaBarbera in late May. Three other members of the 11-member board denied McCain.

That includes Paula’s 87-year-old mother, who still lives in Rockland County, and asked the state to keep LaBarbera away.

Jacobs added, “The possibility of having to see this convicted murderer who took her daughter’s life in such a brutally violent way. Having to see this guy in the grocery store, having to see him walking down the street, that was our concern.”

McGowan didn’t care where LaBarbera went. Just so long as it was five counties away from his client.

Jacobs is sponsoring legislation that would change the rules of the state parole system.

Among the possibilities, making sure that all of the 11-member parole board has a say in an inmate’s release, rather than just three.

That way, Jacobs says, politics stays out of such critical decisions.

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