Father of Polly Klaas Calls Killer’s Bid to Overturn Death Sentence a “Travesty of Justice”

Marc Klaas, the father of Polly Klaas, described her convicted killer’s attempt to overturn his death sentence as a “travesty of justice.”

“I couldn’t have been happier. … It was exactly what I wanted to hear,” Klaas told Fox News Digital about a California judge’s Friday decision to reject Richard Allen Davis’ request for a resentencing. “I thought the judge was fantastic.

I thought Judge Williams did exactly what he needed to do, and he put a stop to this. … I don’t think he wanted to be the guy who threw himself on the third rail of Richard Allen Davis. This is a guy that’s not going to benefit anybody by giving him a resentencing.”

Richard Allen Davis, imprisoned at San Quentin State Prison, was sentenced to death in 1996 for abducting 12-year-old Polly Klaas from a sleepover at knifepoint and then strangling her to death in 1993.

Sonoma County Judge Benjamin Williams rejected Davis’ petition to overturn his death sentence, which had been allowed a resentencing hearing nearly 30 years after his conviction under Governor Gavin Newsom’s 2019 decision to halt the death penalty in the state. Under Newsom’s moratorium, no one in California can be executed while he is governor. from MSN

“It’s a travesty of justice, quite frankly. Twenty-eight years ago, he was sentenced to death, and this was over,” Klaas said. “Now I’m completely fine with the system that exists. I’m fine with the appeals process. If they had found a reason through any of the appeals why he should be resentenced … I would have been disappointed, but I would have understood it. This is something completely different.”

Davis had invaded a slumber party at Polly’s mother’s home in Petaluma, California, where he bound and blindfolded Polly’s two friends before kidnapping her.

The Sonoma County District Attorney’s Office opposed Davis’ request for resentencing from the outset and ultimately convinced the judge to uphold his death sentence. The DA’s office noted that Davis’ conviction had previously been upheld in 2009 after an appeal.

Senate Bill 483 allows defendants with one-year enhancements for prior convictions to request recalls and resentencing. Davis sought a full resentencing, including a new jury trial on the death penalty, based on the two-year enhancements in his case, but the court ultimately rejected his request after an April hearing, the DA’s office said.

“We are pleased with the court’s ruling as we believe the remedy sought by the defense at this hearing far surpassed what the legislature intended in enacting SB 483. Unfortunately, this ruling is strictly limited to capital murder sentences. Any existing prison sentence in California, whether it involved non-capital murder, rape, torture, or child sexual assault, is still at risk if it includes the one-year prison prior,” District Attorney Carla Rodriguez said in a Friday statement.

Rodriguez continued, “Even more troubling, this specific legislation is not an outlier, but part of a larger push by many members of our current legislature to undermine sentences and convictions handed down by courts and juries over decades.

While I genuinely believe in the importance of thoughtful criminal justice reform, too often these days what we see coming out of Sacramento is simply short-sighted. Our victims and the families of our victims deserve better.”

Klaas revealed that he had made a public records request with the state of California to determine how many other convicted criminals in the state would be eligible to request resentencing under Newsom’s 2019 law. He received over 9,000 names in response to his request and now wants other victims’ families to know they could face a similar process.

Newsom’s office previously directed AP News to comments the governor made when he issued the moratorium in March 2019, when 737 people were on death row in California.