Gov. Tony Evers on Tuesday issued nine pardons, bringing the total number of people granted clemency by the Democratic governor to 65.
The latest round of pardons follows last month’s Pardon Advisory Board meeting. The board meets again Tuesday and makes recommendations to Evers, who has the final say on pardons.
Evers first began issuing pardons in October, marking a change in course from former Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s decision not to issue any pardons during his eight years as governor.
“I believe in equal justice for all Wisconsinites and the positive impact pardons can have on our criminal justice system and communities,” Evers said in a statement. “During these unprecedented times, it gives me hope knowing that those receiving pardons are getting a second chance and new opportunities to better their communities.”
A pardon doesn’t remove a conviction from someone’s record, but is considered an official grant of forgiveness that restores certain rights, including the ability to own a gun, serve on a jury, hold public office and hold certain professional licenses or positions.
Evers’ latest round of pardons includes individuals convicted of drug-related offenses, theft and financial crimes. The majority of crimes were committed when the individuals were between 19 and 21 years old.
Those pardoned on Tuesday include Patrick Dell, 45, who was charged with selling marijuana when he was 19. Dell now owns a business in Wausau, where he lives with his family.
Matthew Brunner, 34, was charged with selling marijuana as a 21-year-old. Brunner now works as an electrical systems technician near Green Bay, where he lives with his wife and two children.
Jesse Gleason, 30, was charged with selling cocaine when he was 19. Gleason is now a welder and lives in Schofield with his wife and child.
When he was 19, Larry Fayerweather cashed forged checks that he stole from a family friend. Now 55, Fayerweather is married with children and grandchildren and lives in Colorado.
Markeila McCarter, 45, used someone else’s credit card at a department store when she was 21. McCarter has two daughters, lives in Illinois and works as a nurse health aide. She hopes to work in childcare, which is now possible given her pardon, according to a press release.
Kimberly Schillo, 50, was charged with writing bad checks more than 25 years ago. She now lives in Milwaukee and works as an administrative assistant to support her children.
Brady Gibney, 27, was 17 when he broke into a gas station and stole cigarettes. Gibney has since obtained a bachelor’s degree and works in the manufacturing sector. He lives in Delavan.
Tonya Miller, 51, struck her daughter as punishment about 26 years ago. She has since taken parenting classes and gotten an education. Miller lives in Chicago.
Richard Walker, 33, got into a fight with another man when he was 19. Walker lives in Burnett with his wife and children.
COVID-19 in photos: How Wisconsin is managing the pandemic
Get Government & Politics updates in your inbox!
Stay up-to-date on the latest in local and national government and political topics with our newsletter.