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Former Tampa Police Officer Denied Parole over Threatening Gestures

May 24th, 2017 by Mike Vasilinda

A former Tampa police officer who has spent 37 years in prison for a murder during a robbery gone bad had a release date of this coming July 4th, but as Mike Vasilinda tells us, a panel decided the release put society, the Attorney General and a high ranking former prosecutors at risk.

Former Police Officer Charles Norman got life for killing a 20 year old security guard in 1975. He’s one of several thousand inmates sentenced before 1983 when life only meant 25 years.

While maintaining his innocence, Norman has become a nationally recognized writer and sculptor in prison.

Attorney Bill Shepard and Norman’s Wife Elizabeth came to the Commission on Offender Review to argue the former cop could safely be released as early as July 4th of this year.

“He shows no tendency toward violence, and exhibits no thought disorders and is in the lowest five percent category of risk” Shepperd told the panel.

But prosecutor Kimberly Hindman painted a different picture.

“Anyone who opposes this man becomes a focus and a target for how he’s going to take that person down” Hindman told Commissioners.

Before becoming Attorney General Pam Bondi was a prosecutor in the office that put Norman away.
“He sent letters to me with veiled threats” she says.

Now Prosecutors argue neither Bondi nor former State Attorney Mark Ober would be safe if Norman is released.

“Because Pam Bondi, Mark Ober, and anybody else who gets in his way when he is released have to start looking over their shoulder 24 hours a day seven days a week” says Hindman.

The panel denied Parole

The decision means Norman will spend at least the next two and perhaps the next seven years in prison.

Afterwards we asked wife Elizabeth “Not what you expected?”

“I have nothing to say, thank you” she responded.

Norman’s fate was sealed when Prosecutors disclosed Norman is still making threats which were recorded during a prison phone call with his wife.

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