Florida: An Act of Mercy

"An Act of Mercy"

When Roswell Gilbert, 76, received a life sentence last spring for killing his ailing 73-year-old wife, many Americans were torn. He had unquestionably broken the law; he had also ended the suffering of a woman racked by Alzheimer's disease and an agonizing bone illness. Last week, after months of weighing the issue, Florida's Democratic Governor Bob Graham recommended that Gilbert be released, at least on a provisional basis. Graham asked for a conditional commutation "to permit Gilbert to conduct his appeal from his home rather than from the state correctional system." For Gilbert to be granted clemency, at least half the...

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