SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California’s governor on Thursday rejected releasing Robert F. Kennedy assassin Sirhan Sirhan from prison more than a half-century after the 1968 slaying left a deep wound during one of America’s darkest times.
Gov. Gavin Newsom, who has cited RFK as his “political hero” and embraced the historical significance of his decision, rejected a recommendation from a two-person panel of parole commissioners. Newsom said Sirhan, now 77, poses an unreasonable threat to public safety.
“Mr. Sirhan’s assassination of Senator Kennedy is among the most notorious crimes in American history,” Newsom wrote in his decision. “After decades in prison, he has failed to address the deficiencies that led him to assassinate Senator Kennedy. Mr. Sirhan lacks the insight that would prevent him from making the same types of dangerous decisions he made in the past.”
He said factors in his decision including Sirhan’s refusal to accept responsibility for his crime, his lack of insight and the accountability required to support his safe release, his failure to disclaim violence committed in his name, and his failure to mitigate his risk factors.
Kennedy, the U.S. senator from New York, was shot moments after he claimed victory in California’s pivotal Democratic presidential primary. Five others …read more