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  #1  
Old 02-17-2018, 12:33 AM
Lini Lini is offline
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Default Support Letter for Clemency Petition

Hope this is the correct forum.
My friend is intending to submit a clemency petition and asked me if I would write a letter of support (of course!)

I am hoping some members may have suggestions as to what should be included in the letter. Its such an important event and I want to do the best I can for him.

Thanks.
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Old 02-17-2018, 05:50 AM
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Is the petition for clemency being filed in New Zealand, or elsewhere? The letter should be written specifically for whoever is deciding the issue. In the US for federal crimes, it has to clear the office of the US Dept. of Justice's pardon attorney, or it is blocked there and never gets to the President. Each US State has their own pardon/clemency policy too, so be sure to research what needs to be done in the correct jurisdiction.
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Old 02-17-2018, 10:26 AM
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If you are writing to a US agency, I can be more of help. I know nothing of NZ laws or jurisprudence.
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Old 02-17-2018, 12:03 PM
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Thanks. My friend is in Alaska.
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Old 02-17-2018, 06:00 PM
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Okay, this all follows the same formula of letter that any character letter follows.

Start with who you are and how you know the offender, along with how long you've known him, and that you support his petition for clemency.

Your job then is to help to create a portrait of the person beyond just the criminal jacket. An anecdote of something good is quite appropriate to help do this. This is all his pre-incarceration background.

From there, you get into the real change that you've seen in the offender since his imprisonment:

1 how he has taken responsibility for his crime
2 measures he's taken to address the circumstances within himself to make it so he will never offend again
3. The programming he's been involved with, and how that has influenced his character and caused him to grow
4. The maturation you've seen in him as a whole person
5. Contribution (positive) to the prison community

You then want to talk about plans for the future, should he get out - waiting job, family, staying in drug or alcohol programming, volunteering, religious devotional opportunities, etc.

You don't want to argue the case or the sentence - leave that for the professionals. You don't want to argue the law. You want to talk about the person, the whole person and talk about why you support his application for clemency.

You can ignore the stuff you know nothing about. Stick to what you know and write from the heart.

Ask your offender about whether he has an attorney who wants to collect these letters or whether you should just mail one Solo.

Keep it respectful, don't use slang, don't use profanity, use buiness structure for margins, salutations, dating, signatures, etc. use your standard Times New Roman font unless specifically instructed otherwise. Use regular paper, white. Sign it with a pen. My preference is blue unless instructed otherwise by statute. Blue shows that it is not a computer generated signature, but is not glaring.

Anyway, those are the basics of your generic clemency character letter.
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Old 02-17-2018, 06:27 PM
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If he is in Alaska (there are no federal prisons there), it will be an application under the Alaska State Statutes. Here is what the AK Parole Board says about the process.
http://www.correct.state.ak.us/parol...lemency-update
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