The New York Prisoner Assistance Center, a support group for prisoners, is circulating an online petition on Change.org to push Gov. Cuomo to release Barbara Sheehan, the Howard Beach woman who killed her abusive husband in 2008.
Sheehan was acquitted of murder in the killing of her husband, NYPD Sgt. Raymond Sheehan on the grounds that she had acted in self-defense after years of abuse. But a jury did convict her in 2011 of criminal possession of a weapon for using an illegal handgun in the shooting. The conviction has been appealed to the state’s highest court, the Court of Appeals.
NYSPAC wants up to 25,000 signatures to pressure Cuomo to allow her to serve the rest of her sentence on parole under Jenna’s Law, which determines sentences of first-time violent felons who had suffered domestic violence abuse that played a factor in the commission of the crime.
Sheehan began serving the last three years of a five-year sentence last summer after an appellate court denied a request to reduce it. She had spent the first two years of the sentence out on bail.