Home News Life Sirhan Sirhan to be released from prison, served 53 years for murdering senator Kennedy

Sirhan Sirhan to be released from prison, served 53 years for murdering senator Kennedy

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Sirhan Sirhan, who murdered U.S. senator Robert F. Kennedy in 1968, was told on Friday that he may be released from prison after 53 years. After 15 previous attempts by Sirhan to be released, a committee gave a positive opinion on Sirhan’s release.

Only the governor of the state of California has yet to make the release actually official. That process will probably take several months. A spokesman for governor Gavin Newsom couldn’t say anything about that Friday.

Two of Kennedy’s sons, Robert Jr. and Douglas, supported Sirhan’s release request. The prosecutors also had no objections to his release.

“I am overwhelmed by seeing Mr. Sirhan in person. All my life I lived in fear of him and his name,” says Douglas Kennedy. “I am grateful that I can now see him as a person who deserves compassion and love.”

Sirhan’s lawyer, Angela Berry, calls for his release on the basis of “who he is today”. At its last hearing in 2016, after hours of questioning, the Justice Commission concluded that Sirhan was not sufficiently repented and that he did not understand the enormity of his crime, writes The Guardian.

“More than half a century has passed and I am no longer that young impulsive child of that time,” Sirhan told the Justice Commission this time. “Kennedy was the hope of the world and I hurt everyone with this terrible act.”

The now 77-year-old Palestinian immigrant shot Kennedy at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles on June 5, 1968. The senator was then a candidate for the U.S. presidential election.

A clear motive for the murder was never found, but prosecutors found a diary of Sirhan in which he expressed his dissatisfaction with Kennedy’s, in his eyes, pro-Israel course. Sirhan was initially sentenced to death, but was later commuted to life.

If the governor decides to release Sirhan, he will probably be deported to Jordan. As an immigrant, he never received American citizenship.

Kennedy was the brother of former American president John F. Kennedy.

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