Fallin agrees to early release of woman who got 12-year term for $31 marijuana sale
BY CARY ASPINWALL World Staff Writer
Friday, July 20, 2012
7/20/12 at 4:58 PM
Gov. Mary Fallin has agreed to early release for inmate Patricia Spottedcrow, a young mother whose story of lengthy sentence for selling a small amount of marijuana was featured in a Tulsa World series on Women in Prison.
Under the governor’s stipulations, Spottedcrow will be required to complete 120 days at a community-level Department of Corrections facility before she is released. Spottedcrow, 27, was originally handed a 12-year sentence in a blind plea before a judge for selling $31 worth of marijuana to a police informant.
Because children were in Spottedcrow’s home when she was arrested, a charge of possession of a dangerous substance in the presence of a minor was added. Her mother, Delita Starr, was also charged with the crime, but she was given a 30-year suspended sentence so she could care for Spottedcrow’s four children while their mother was incarcerated.
Last year, a Kingfisher County judge reduced her sentence by four years.
After her story was published in the Tulsa World’s series on Women in Prison in 2011, a groundswell of support emerged.
The Oklahoma Pardon & Parole board agreed to review Spottedcrow's case early and in April, voted 5-0 to recommend early release.
Read more in Saturday's Tulsa World.
Patricia Spottedcrow poses on her bunk in a dorm at Dr. Eddie Warrior Correctional Facility in Taft, Oklahoma back in December. JOHN CLANTON/Tulsa World File