Woman Convicted of Murder will be Paroled

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) _ A woman who was convicted of the Jefferson City murder of a potential witness in her boyfriend's burglary case will be paroled a year earlier than expected.

Betty Coleman is one of three domestic abuse victims whose life sentences then-Governor Bob Holden commuted in late 2004, making them eligible for early parole. But none of the women was immediately freed, angering domestic violence advocates and sparking litigation.

Coleman is the last of the women still in prison. She learned yesterday that she'll be freed in October, having served 27 years. After Holden commuted her sentence, the parole board initially set an October 2008 release date for Coleman.

In a telephone interview from the state prison in Chillicothe last night, Coleman said she's pleased with the decision but is upset that the parole board did not release her earlier.

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