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Thread: Stringbeans Killer Parole

  1. #1

    Default Stringbeans Killer Parole

    Stringbean Killer's Parole. John A. Brown, one of the two men convicted of killing Stringbean and his wife years ago, is coming up for parole on July 19th. So far, there has been very little opposition to his being released. If you would like to protest the release of John A. Brown, you can send her an e-mail at
    <removed by moderator. Posting someone's personal email address, phone number or address without their permission is prohibited.> and
    let her know you oppose it and why
    Last edited by Scott Tichenor; Jul-18-2011 at 6:58am. Reason: Posting someone's personal email address, phone number or address without their permission is prohibited.

  2. #2
    Registered User
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    Dec 2007
    Reston, VA

    Default Re: Stringbeans Killer Parole

    It was a brutal crime, but it really sounds like this guy has been a model prisoner for over three decades. Here's a news clipping I found online about his last parole hearing:

    Letters and commendations in Brown's parole file, several inches thick, go back to the 1970s. There are impassioned letters from his wife to then-governor Ray Blanton, asking for a reduction in sentence. As his parole hearings approached in 1993 and 2003, letters of support piled up from pastors who worked with the religious man, community members offering jobs upon his release and those he touched during his imprisonment. Page after page came on Tennessee Department of Correction letterhead, from corrections officers, counselors and even a warden of his facility.


    The common refrain was, "I don't usually write letters on behalf of an inmate, but I had to make an exception for John Brown."

    The rest of the file marks his activities behind bars. He started a program to raise money for orphans in Africa. He achieved a silver ranking as an advanced Toastmaster. He got his GED and an associate degree from the University of Tennessee. He took anger and stress management, carried the prison softball team, and led the prison chapter of Alcoholics Anonymous.

    Even the board members at the hearing, board chairman Charles Traughber and James Austin, acknowledged the contrast with the crime.
    I don't know if he should be granted parole, but I'm really uneasy with the idea that we should reflexively oppose it.
    Last edited by PJ Doland; Jul-18-2011 at 9:43am. Reason: Changed indent tag to quote tag.
    PJ Doland
    1923 Gibson Snakehead A

  3. #3

    Default Re: Stringbeans Killer Parole

    Seems like something to stay out of unless you know all the facts. No doubt this guy destroyed a lot of lives, including his own. High profile killers usually never get to see the light of day. If this guy did in fact rehabilitate himself and is released it at least gives other prisoners a reason to try and straighten themselves out. If no one gets out then why bother.

  4. #4
    Registered User swain's Avatar
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    Mar 2010
    Lexington, KY

    Default Re: Stringbeans Killer Parole

    I attended the Grand Old Opry the weekend after the crime. Roy Acuff couldn't sing, could barely talk. A lot of sadness in the auditorium, in the audience as well as on stage.

    It sounds like this Brown character is doing well inside,,,,let him stay there and keep up his "good" work.

    For these reasons and others I oppose the parole.


  5. #5
    Registered User
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    Aug 2009
    Red Lodge, MT

    Default Re: Stringbeans Killer Parole

    OK Let's get back to practicing the mandolin!!!

  6. #6
    Professional Dreamer journeybear's Avatar
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    Key West
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    Default Re: Stringbeans Killer Parole

    I'm with barney on this one. I hadn't thought of it until now, but if there isn't this kind of reward for turning one's life around in prison, then what is one's motivation for rehabilitation? If we think of ours as a forgiving society, then once someone has paid his legally defined debt for his crimes, and has proven to have rehabilitated himself, he should be allowed to rejoin society. It's bad enough that former convicts have to make their way with their prison records following them around, limiting their options and also suffering disparaging attitudes; they should be allowed to contribute to society once they have served their time. They have held up their end of the bargain, and once they have done that, it's hypocritical to continue to punish them further, inside or out.

    I am really more old school on this issue than most states are, and would just as soon see killers be killed and have done with it. The amount of money spent on the prison system is astounding, but it is done in the hope that some prisoners will be able to turn their lives around and return to society. If our society is set up so that someone can pay a legally set price for his actions, and in so doing shows himself to be a better person - and in this case, possibly a better person than a lot of people who never went to prison - I say, let the man be. We need as many good people in our society as possible to tilt the overall balance toward good. Not that he was a good person when he went in, but he seems to be a good person now.

    I know this is bound to be a hot button issue, and if this post is deemed unsuitable then remove it, or if the thread is deemed too inflammatory, close it, and I am fine with either action. This is being discussed here only because the victim was a bluegrass legend, a much-beloved one, and even that is stretching the definition of acceptable discussion here. I would have been fine with executing this man, but if he has earned parole, as allowed by our legal system, he should be granted it. I don't think I want to hoist a few and swap stories with him, but if we are a society that gives people a second chance, give it to him. Are we ever going to get Stringbean back? Nope. Is continuing to punish his killer a worthwhile activity? Nope. There is no really good solution here, so it's a matter of making the best of a bad situation. He has shown himself to be a model prisoner; hopefully that should translate to him being a model citizen.

    And yes, you're quite right, montana. It's about practice time. Or nap time, followed by practice.
    But that's just my opinion. I could be wrong. - Dennis Miller

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  7. #7
    Site founder Scott Tichenor's Avatar
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    Sep 2002
    Lawrence, KS
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    Default Re: Stringbeans Killer Parole

    It's definitely news, but this forum isn't the place for debates on the U.S. penal system and parole issues.

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