PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — Governor Kristi Noem, on Saturday, granted seven commutations for seven individuals incarcerated by the South Dakota Department of Corrections.
According to a press release, the individuals had their sentences commuted to parole for the remainder of their terms.
Receiving commuted sentences are Danielle Blakney, Jamie Christine Bosone, Jerome R. Ferguson, Britni Jean Goodhart, Connie Hirsch, Tammy Kvasnicka, and Whitney Renae Turney.
Hirsch, Kvasnicka and Turney killed other people. Blakney, Bosone, Ferguson and Goodhart committed illegal-drug crimes.
“These seven individuals have each earned a second chance. Each of these individuals has demonstrated a low risk of recidivism. They are being released with precautions in place such as electronic monitoring and parole supervision to help them succeed,” the governor said.
The commutations were announced on Christmas Eve.
Precautions in place include electronic monitoring, parole supervision plans and a return to prison for parole violations. The monitoring technology includes GPS monitoring and Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitoring (SCRAM) devices that alert if an offender is using alcohol, according to the release.
The South Dakota Constitution gives the governor the power to “grant pardons, commutations, and reprieves.”
According to the state Department of Corrections:
Hirsch, 57, was sentenced May 17, 2012, for first-degree manslaughter in Hughes County.
Kvasnicka, 40, was sentenced November 7, 2014, for first-degree manslaughter in Minnehaha County.
Turney, 34, was sentenced March 23, 2016, for first-degree manslaughter in Lyman County.
Blakney, 30, was sentenced September 6, 2022, for possession of a controlled substance in Lawrence County.
Bosone, 32, was sentenced August 2, 2022, for possession of a controlled substance and keeping a place for distribution in Davison County.
Ferguson, 44, was sentenced April 12, 2022, for possession of a controlled substance in Davison County.
Goodhart, 32, was sentenced March 15, 2022, for possession of a controlled substance in Grant County.
Reporter Bob Mercer contributed to this story.