AUSTIN (KXAN) — Gov. Greg Abbott called for the pardon of Daniel Perry a day after he was found guilty by a jury for the 2020 murder of a Black Lives Matter protester in Austin.
“I am working as swiftly as Texas law allows regarding the pardon of Sgt. Perry,” Abbott said in a tweet Saturday.
In the tweet, Abbott said Texas has one of the strongest “Stand Your Ground” laws of self-defense that cannot be nullified.
Texas’ pardon process starts with the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles. The board can submit a pardon recommendation to the governor, who then can approve the pardon.
Abbott said he requested the board request a pardon for Perry and “instructed the Board to expedite its review.”
“I look forward to approving the Board’s pardon recommendation as soon as it hits my desk,” Abbott’s tweet said.
Read the full comment from Abbott here.
Reaction to Abbott’s pardon request
There have been strong responses from supporters and detractors of Perry’s guilty verdict and Abbott’s request to pardon.
Texas Congressman Ronny Jackson tweeted out Friday evening to Governor Abbott demanding that he pardon Perry.
Kyle Rittenhouse, the teen most well-known for being acquitted of shooting and killing Black Lives Matter protesters in Wisconsin, also tweeted in support of Perry’s right to self defense.
Former Travis County assistant district attorney Rick Cofer said the Governor’s move is premature and has interrupted normal justice proceedings.
“Daniel Perry hasn’t even been sentenced yet. He’s not even at this moment, eligible for a pardon from the Governor, even to apply for a pardon, requires final certified copies of judgment and sentence,” Cofer said.
Chas Moore, executive director of the Austin Justice Coalition, said he did not expect the jury to find Perry guilty and questions the Governor’s call to pardon.
“I think this signifies the opposition is using their powers to undo, unravel any type of justice that remains in the justice system,” Moore said.