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 Entertainment Archive 2015

MA Gov. Deval Patrick will most likely not pardon Mark Wahlberg
by Nathan'ette Burdine: January 3, 2015-Updated January 9, 2015

Governor Deval Patrick (D-MA) will most likely not grant actor Mark Wahlberg a pardon for his 1988 felony assault conviction that resulted from the racially charged attacks against two Vietnamese men.

Patrick has not pardoned anyone during his two term tenure as governor. The Boston Globe asked Patrick about Wahlberg’s chances of receiving a pardon.

And Patrick responded, “Well, he’s got to get through the parole board. He’s going to be treated like everyone else.”

On November 24, 2014, Wahlberg submitted a formal application of clemency to the Board of Paroles.

In his application, Wahlberg cited the work he’s done with at risk youths and the Boys and Girls club.

CNN quoted Wahlberg as saying, “The more complex answers that receiving a pardon would be a formal recognition that I am not the same person that I was the night of April 8, 1988.

It would be formal recognition that someone like me can receive official public redemption if he devotes himself to personal improvement and a life of good works.”

Wahlberg has also stated that he will like to become a reserve police officer, but his felony conviction is preventing him from joining the police force.

Joshua Wall, chairman of the Parole Board, told WWLP that he believes the new clemency rules will increase the chances for a person to be pardon.

Unlike the old pardon rules, a person no longer needs to show a “compelling need” in order to be pardon.

The state defined a compelling need as something that was essential to maintaining a person’s health, life, or security.

Some examples of this include a person’s employment or an immigrant who is at risk of great bodily harm if he goes back to his home country.

Under the new guidelines, a person can receive a pardon if he shows that he has “made an extraordinary contribution” to society.

And the “extraordinary contribution” to society doesn’t have to include something at the level of becoming a multi-millionaire and donating to charities.

It can include a person who has not been convicted of any more crimes and has held a steady 9 to 5 job for an extended period of time.

Wahlberg is one among several people who are seeking a pardon and hoping that the new guidelines will increase their chances of being pardon.

Last year in October, the parole board recommended that three people be pardon.

Those three people are True-See Allah (Troy Watson), Jeffrey Snyder, and Edem Amet. All three are in the same age group, early 40s, as Wahlberg.

Allah, who is 43, was convicted in 1988 of armed assault after his gang shot and paralyzed Macarthur Williams.

Due to Allah using a shotgun, the parole board recommended that he receive a conditional pardon. A conditional pardon means Allah cannot own a gun.

Snyder, who is also 43, was convicted in 1995 of two drug offenses resulting from his having and intent of selling marijuana near a school.

Amet, who is 42, is a Swiss citizen of Liberian descent. He was convicted in 1995 of selling crack cocaine to an undercover police officer.

Due to the severity of his crime, Allah is the most similar to Wahlberg. Like Allah, Wahlberg used a weapon and caused great bodily harm to his victim.

Wahlberg called Than Lam a “Vietnam fucking shit” while beating him unconscious with a stick.

After beating Lam unconscious, Wahlberg then found another Vietnamese man, Hoa Trinh, and beat him until he was blind in one eye.

Wahlberg was given a two year sentence, but he only served 45 days in jail. Due to the fact that Wahlberg used a weapon to commit his crime, the board could recommend, as it did in the Allah case, a conditional pardon.

Wahlberg has said that the incident has followed him throughout his life, but he has learned to let go the guilt from that day.

Thought Catalog quoted Wahlberg as saying, “You have to go and ask for forgiveness and it wasn’t until I really started doing good and doing right by other people, as well as myself, that I really started to feel that guilt go away.

So I don’t have a problem going to sleep at night. I feel good when I wake up in the morning.”

Wahlberg has said that he has thought about reaching out to Trinh, but that he hasn’t found the time to contact him.

In order for Wahlberg to be pardon, he must first go through the Parole Board and then the Office of the Governor.

The governor then takes a look at the requests. And if the governor is in favor of a pardon, he then goes to the council of the governors who will make the final decision on whether a pardon should be granted.

The last time a person received a pardon in the state of Massachusetts was 2002.

Correction: Former Governor Deval Patrick issued the first of two pardons, since 2002, in December 2014. The Boston Herald reported that Patrick pardoned Jeffrey Snyder, who was convicted of drug related charges, and Guy James Coraccio, who committed several crimes when he was between the ages of 14 and 21. Patrick also commuted the sentence of Deanne Hamilton who had a cocaine conviction on her record. According to the Boston Herald, Patrick asked the council of governors to pardon Thomas Schoolscraft and True-See Allah.

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