RFK assassin Sirhan Sirhan denied parole, Gov. Newsom explains reason in LA Times Op-Ed

California Department of Corrections.

Sirhan Sirhan, the man who was convicted for the assassination of Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, has been denied parole by Governor Gavin Newsom of California. Newsom has explained the reasons for denial in an Op-Ed in the Los Angeles Times. RFK’s family have had mixed reactions to the parole decision. Two of Kennedy’s son were for parole while his widow and the rest of the family were against it.

In an Op-Ed titled “Why I will not release Sirhan Sirhan on parole,” Newsom said that although California’s Board of Parole Hearings found Sirhan to be suitable for parole, he disagreed. He said that he had reviewed the case and had determined that Sirhan had not developed the necessary accountability and insight.

He added that Kennedy’s assassination was a major blow to the nation and to his family. He noted that millions of Americans had lost a unifier, at a time of turmoil, as it was just over two months after the assassination of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and less than five years since the murder of another Kennedy—President John F. Kennedy, who was Robert F. Kennedy’s brother.

Governor Newsom also said that the most glaring proof of Sirhan’s deficient insight was his shifting narrative about the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy. The governor also pointed out that the Christian Palestinian had recorded his plans to kill Kennedy. In a televised interview in 1989 with David Frost, he confirmed that he had assassinated Kennedy. He also said that he acted alone.

The 40th governor of California also said that Sirhan had much work to do and asked him to ponder on Kennedy’s words where he had said that the people could “work a little harder to bind up the wounds among us and to become in our own hearts brothers and countrymen once again.”

Sirhan Sirhan is 77 years old. He has spent 53 years in prison for the 1968 assassination of Robert F. Kennedy. Despite the decades, the wounds are fresh for his widow Ethel and most of his children who were against his release. However, two of Kennedy’s sons, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and Douglas Kennedy were in favor of Sirhan’s release when he appeared before the California Parole Board for the 16th time.


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