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Former L.A. prosecutor among those pardoned by Jerry Brown

February 1, 2013 |  3:40 pm

Gov. Jerry Brown granted 128 pardons and commuted the sentence of one prisoner last year, his office reported Friday.

Among those who received a pardon was George Schwartz, a former prosecutor and deputy Los Angeles city attorney, who was convicted of soliciting sexual favors from a female defendant in return for promising to help her obtain a lighter sentence.

In April, he commuted the sentence of Shirley Ree Smith, who was convicted of killing her grandson in 1997, saying he had “significant doubts" about her guilt.

Brown announced 79 of the pardons and the commuted sentence last year. On Friday, as required by law, Brown submitted a report on all of the pardons and commuted sentences for the year, which included the 49 previously unannounced cases.

Most of the pardons were for people who had been convicted of nonviolent drug offenses and had long since served their sentences. Brown noticed that since their convictions, all of those granted a pardon had gone on to be upstanding citizens.

Since taking office in 2011, Brown has been far more liberal with his pardon power than his predecessors.

Brown has now pardoned 149 people in his two years in office. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger pardoned  16 people during his seven years in office. Gray Davis granted no pardons during his five years as governor.


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 --Anthony York in Sacramento