Woman convicted of Fresno Co murder to be released from prison

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Fresno County District Attorney Lisa Smittcamp says she's frustrated by the governor's decision. (KFSN)

57-year-old Winona Weathers could be spending her last days in prison in Chowchilla right now.

This after Governor Jerry Brown commuted her sentence less than a week ago.

The former Central Valley resident was found guilty in the murder of William McClelland in December 1990.

In 1993, she was sentenced to life in prison, but soon she might be living her life outside these walls.



Fresno County Assistant District Attorney Steve Wright does not want Weathers to be released.

"I don't believe she pulled the trigger but the motive was due to a debt that was owed to her."

Court documents show that debt from a friend was over $1,500.

In witness testimony, Weathers, on the day of the murder is quoted saying "shoot him. shoot him." before two shots were fired.

Brown's commutation letter says "Weathers participated in a very serious crime, but she has accepted responsibility for her actions and has worked hard to turn her life around."

Weathers is even quoted in it saying "I use my past mistakes now to teach others not to make the same ones. I have a newfound appreciation for life."

However, Wright says there is one other problem, he says the D.A.'s office was never notified that weathers filed an appeal to be released. Something Wright says is supposed to be done before a sentence is commuted.

"I did look through our records, I don't see that we ever received a notice. If we were not given the opportunity to voice our objection, that may be a reason for the Governor to rethink his commutation."

Wright says the District Attorney's office is working to get that issue resolved.

before Weathers is released from prison she will have to go before a parole board and several commissioners and ask them to grant her parole.

As this time, it is unclear when that will happen.
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prisonpardonjerry brownFresno County
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