A convicted felon who was freed from a Colorado prison over concerns of the Chinese coronavirus spreading has been arrested less than a month later for allegedly murdering a 21-year-old woman.
Cornelius Haney has been charged for the first-degree murder of Heather Perry, whose body was found in a Denver, Colorado alleyway, according to CBS Denver.
Haney allegedly murdered Perry less than a month after he was released from prison thanks to Gov. Jared Polis’s (D) executive order freeing some inmates from jails and prisons over fears of the coronavirus spreading in state and local detention facilities.
Haney had been serving a seven-year prison sentence after pleading guilty in 2016 to an armed robbery in Arapahoe County, Colorado. Haney was not eligible for mandatory release until August, but Polis’s order giving the state’s corrections board authority to reduce sentences over the coronavirus allowed the felon to secure early release on April 15.
In a statement to CBS Denver, the Colorado Department of Corrections said Haney met “special needs parole criteria” and thus his release was approved by the parole board.
Polis said the parole board did not believe that Haney would commit murder once released from prison.
“He would have had mandatory parole granted in August of this year,” Polis said. “He has been up for parole since 2017.” He went on to say:
In making those decisions, they are taking into account the safety of prison guards and others, but no prisoner who is a danger to society should be released early in any situation. And of course, nobody on that parole board thought that this person was going to do what they allegedly did, but they couldn’t have held them much longer under the law.”
Haney is now being held at the Denver jail without bail. He is facing additional charges including possession of a weapon by a previous offender, theft, and second-degree kidnapping.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.