Governor McDonnell just announced a conditional pardon of Johnathan Montgomery.
Tuesday marks twelve days since a judge ordered Jonathan Montgomery to be released from the Greensville Correctional Facility. After the governor’s pardon, Montgomery will be released Tuesday evening.
Montgomery served four years of a prison sentence for sex crimes his accuser now says he never committed. She was arrested on perjury charges, and is currently out on bond.
Montgomery was serving a seven-year sentence, that began in 2008.
After the judge ordered Montgomery’s release the Attorney General’s Office blocked Montgomery’s release, saying he first must receive an official writ of innocence.
Governor Bob McDonnell was sent, on Monday, a request to pardon Montgomery.
The Innocence Project was working on Montgomery’s case and submitted the request for a conditional pardon. [Editor’s note: I believe this was the Mid-Atlantic Innocence Project]
An official release from the office of Gov. McDonnell stated that the governor personally called Johnathan Montgomery to tell him the news and to offer “our heartfelt apologies for all that he has been put through due to this miscarriage of justice.”
He also spoke directly to Mr. Montgomery’s mother, and called Montgomery’s father.
“Our staff, together with their counterparts in various state and local agencies, did a great deal of work on this petition in under 20 hours,” Gov. McDonnell said, and thanked everyone for that service.
“This situation has been a tragedy,” he said. “An innocent man was in jail for four years.”
The governor acknowledged that although Montgomery will soon be free from prison, “he will never get those years of his life back.”
“I am thankful that the witness in this case finally stepped forward to recent her testimony,” said McDonnell.
“Justice, while tragically delayed, has been served.” “More than anything else, I wish Mr. Montgomery a successful and fulfilled future with his family and his friends,” McDonnell said.