SACRAMENTO – Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today announced that he has granted 38 pardons and 70 commutations.
Individuals who have been convicted of a crime in California may apply to the Governor for a pardon. Those granted pardons all completed their prison sentences years ago and the majority were convicted of drug-related or other nonviolent crimes. Pardons are not granted unless they are earned.
A gubernatorial pardon may be granted to individuals who have demonstrated exemplary behavior and have lived productive and law-abiding lives following their conviction. The process includes eligible individuals obtaining a Certificate of Rehabilitation, which is an order from a superior court declaring that a person convicted of a crime is now rehabilitated.
When a pardon is granted, the California Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are notified so that they may update their records on the applicant. The pardon is filed with the Secretary of State and the Legislature, and it is a public record.
Individuals currently serving a sentence for a conviction by the California courts can petition to have their sentence reduced by applying for a commutation. In the majority of these commutations, the individuals have been granted the opportunity to make their case before the Board of Parole Hearings, which will determine whether they are ready to be paroled.