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Letter to Editor


Darrius SamuelThe case of Charles Walker and Joseph Jenkins

First hearing this story caused intrigue instantly for me. Not necessarily what happened, but how it happened and how the situation was getting handled. Two hardened felons, both released from prison. That’s right, not an escape but actually released. Both Charles Walker and Joseph Jenkins presented realistic but synthetic paperwork and were both freed from the Florida Department of
Corrections. Jenkins was released September 27, 2013. and Walker shortly after on October 3rd.
Now if that is not a big enough travesty – that two convicted felons were free and back within society – it would be the fact that no one was owning up to the issue. After their release Misty Cash, the department of corrections spokesman said, “It ‘s not our job to question what the court does” and also “The fault does not lie on us. No one is getting into trouble here for what happened.”
I do want to let  the public know that the felons were captured on Sunday October 13th, but I still
feel this incident requires ownership and a plan to prevent it from happening again.
Now, the requirement for eligibility of parole in Florida states that for first degree murder convictions it would have to have been prior to May 25, 1994. Joseph Jenkins’ offense and convictions (1st degree murder, attempted robbery with a deadly weapon, and armed burglary) lay clearly past that time frame occurring in 1998-2000. Charles Walker’s conviction of 2nd degree murder also did not meet the requirement of parole  which would have required his conviction to be prior to
October 1, 1983, but his crime wasn’t even committed until 1999.
So that brings up the question of what systems are being used to verify the release of these inmates.
My sources tell me it’s more like a data entry program than an approval or denial system. How is it that I am able to pull
these records of these two men to verify their crimes and prison terms but the department of corrections was not? It states clearly on their website that “The Florida Department of Correction updates this information regularly, to ensure that it is complete and accurate.” Did no one think to even look there?

Darrius Samuel
Birmingham, Ala.


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