Some Houston officials want to stop the scheduled release of Jon Buice, who was convicted of killing gay banker Paul Broussard in 1991.
The Houston Chronicle reports that commissioners in the Amarillo office of the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles voted 2 to 0 this month to approve parole in October for Buice, who is serving 45 years in a West Texas prison for his role in the murder. Local officials, including Harris County District Attorney Pat Lykos and at least four state representatives who have written letters to the board, want to stop his release.
The letter details how Buice and nine "co-conspirators" drove to the Montrose neighborhood with the purpose of bullying gay people. Buice, now 37, pleaded guilty to murdering Broussard, who was 27. The other nine people are on parole.
"The defendants swarmed out of their vehicles, chased Paul down a dead-end street, surrounded him and they attacked -- beating the defenseless Paul Broussard with a nail-studded two-by-four, kicking him in the face, chest and groin with steel-toed boots, crushing his testicles, hitting him with their fists and, finally, Jon Christopher Buice stabbed him to death," the letter stated.
According to the Chronicle, Buice was approved for parole under conditions of "maximum supervision," electronic monitoring and substance-abuse treatment. The reasons for his parole include his age, 17, at the time of the crime and the college degrees he has earned while in prison.
A spokesperson for the board said the Texas Department of Criminal Justice Victim Services Division will process all the information protesting the release of Buice and send it to the Amarillo panel. The panel can decide whether to modify its previous vote based on the new information, the Chronicle reports.
At least one gay advocate supports the release of Buice. Ray Hill, also a former prison inmate, befriended Buice and opposes the charge that the attackers used nail-studded boards and steel-toed boots to kill Broussard.