Convicted Murder Was Released For Good Behavior Only to Kill Again
Outrage over the early release of felons convicted of violent crimes led to “Truth in Sentencing” laws in the late 90s that gave victims confidence that 20 years meant 20 years.
For one U.S. Army veteran, Stanley Carter, those reforms came too late, as a convicted murder, out of prison less than a year on early release, gunned him down in cold blood at a Detroit area bus stop.
Malcolm Benson was sentenced to 40 years for second-degree murder in 1995, three years before Michigan’s “Truth in Sentencing” law took effect in 1998, so instead of serving the full sentence until 2035, Benson was released by a parole board after just 19 years inn prison.
The early release was part of the old system of giving so-called “disciplinary credits” to offenders as a reward for staying out of trouble.
Benson received five days credit toward his sentence for every month served and was released in January 2015.
He was back in prison less than nine months later – this time for life.
Witnesses told police that Carter had not been arguing with Benson when the convicted killer walked up to Carter and shot him.
Police confirmed that Benson did not know Carter and had no contact with him prior shooting him during a botched robbery.
Carter crawled toward a nearby restaurant for help before collapsing and dying in the parking lot, as Benson fled to a nearby apartment building where he was arrested after sexually assaulting a woman.
The 1990s laws aimed at reducing uncertainty about the length of time offenders were required to serve are now under attack by Democrats Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, with support from Black Lives Matter, the American Civil Liberties Union, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the National Action Network, Al Sharpton’s organization.