ROCHESTER, NY – A convicted murderer who was out on parole for the second time has now been accused of killing two more people in September.
This incident is one of many in which convicts released early from jail go on to reoffend.
So if I’m doing the math right, a person ON PAROLE in 2015 commits a murder and does about six years, gets out ON PAROLE again and shoots 4 people, killing 2.
But “less is more”?
Less prison time is more victims in #ROC. #lessismore #parolereform @NYSDOCCS @GovKathyHochul https://t.co/J9PWMXkzfz
— Chief Chris Mears (@Chris_Mears_) December 1, 2021
The convicted murderer, John Gordon, had his first trial for murder in 2017 for the shooting death of Renard Small in 2015. Gordon, at that time, admitted to the murder which he committed while out on parole for an unrelated criminal possession of a weapon charge.
Gordon was found guilty in 2017 for that murder and amazingly only sentenced to 7 years in prison. Instead of serving out his full sentence of less than a decade for taking a man’s life, he was released three years early in May of 2021, paroled a second time.
Now, in September, Gordon ws accused yet again of murder – this time, allegedly shooting and killing two people. Police allege that Gordon was in an alleyway on Driving Park Avenue when he opened fire on a crowd of people.
Two of those four people, Jimmy Jones and Sharif Clark, did not survive the injuries they received.
One of the other victims, who was not identified, survived but police advised that he will never be the same. The last person who was shot, a woman, received multiple gunshot injuries but she is expected to survive.
I wonder how many of those petty technical violations Murder Parolee John Gordon was committing on September 19th when he killed 2 and shot 2 others in Rochester? Less is more is bad for our community.
— Jim VanBrederode (@jvanbred) December 1, 2021
Gordon was once again taken into custody for the alleged murders he committed which leaves people scratching their heads as to why he was out on the streets in the first place.
Gates Police Chief James Van Brederode is one of the people vocally expressing his concern over criminal justice reform. He said:
“How is he [Gordon] out at 2:30 in the morning on the streets of Rochester with an illegal gun, how does this happen, why was there no system in place to catch that?
There’s got to be a system in place to differentiate between somebody who has a history of being bad and dangerous versus somebody who is a somebody who is nonviolent criminal somebody we can rehabilitate?”
Van Brederode is the current president for the Monroe County Association of Chief’s of Police and has called other leaders in the law enforcement community to step up and work toward preventing something like this from happening again. In his call to action, a letter, he wrote:
“[Gordon] is a classic example of ‘we told you so’ with the recent criminal justice reforms. The sweeping reforms were made without any common sense or reasonableness.
The Governor recently, and so joyfully, held a press conference celebrating the close of another six (6) prisons in New York, the question has to be asked: Are we as a community prepared to stomach the human cost of these sweeping release programs?
Is this an acceptable price to pay for the freedoms of others?”
Cases like Gordon are not unique, sadly, throughout the country. In Michigan, we have another example of someone who had been paroled that went on to commit yet another violent crime.
On August 6th, Jeremy Donald was released from prison early after serving two years in prison for assaulting police and theft in a building. Donald had previous convictions for unarmed robbery, retail fraud, and theft in a building.
New York refuses to protect its citizens from predators. Protect yourself and be safe!!! https://t.co/llcZZooNnA
— Jim VanBrederode (@jvanbred) November 30, 2021
Regardless of his criminal history, someone saw fit to release Donald early and ordering him to complete another year of parole upon his release. Donald did not last long on the outside and went to a 7-11 on Broadway Street and began acting strange.
While inside the store, Donald began arguing with a person in the parking lot and then got into a vehicle nearby and attempted to steal the keys from the woman inside. At some point, he went from the store to a nearby McDonalds and threw a brick from the ground through a window.
Donald then went inside of the store and began demanding employees give him money. However, police were quick to respond and take him into custody before he could flee.
Donald went in front of a Bay County Judge on May 17th and pleaded guilty to one count of armed robbery. The prosecution offered to dismiss the additional charges he faced, carjacking, breaking, and entering, and destruction of a building, in lieu of his guilty plea.
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More tragically, Chandler was killed on his 29th birthday, according to a press release issued by the Virginia State Police on Facebook.
A responding Wise County sheriff’s deputy found Chandler unconscious in a ditch suffering from a gunshot wound. He was airlifted to the Johnson City Medical Center where he succumbed to his injuries. He is survived by his wife and daughter.
The suspect—Michael Donivan White, age 33—was arrested and charged with Chandler’s murder. Last week, White was arraigned by Wise County Circuit Court Judge Ron Elkins, appearing via video from the Abingdon Regional Jail.
White, a clear scumbag was unconcerned about the proceeding, according to the Times News, slouching in his chair and yawning while at other times leaned forward.
He yawned and smiled while the charges against him were read. It all appeared to be nothing more than an inconvenience for the cop killer.
When Elkins advised White he was being arraigned on probation violations as well as the new indictment handed down by a special grand jury relative to Chandler’s killing, White said, “Ain’t nobody worried about probation violations.”
White was on probation for two counts of grand larceny when the murder of Chandler occurred, according to WJHL. The outlet reported that White will go on trial for felony murder, as well as 12 other charges on April 11-15 next year. That is in addition to the two counts of grand larceny.
“You as a defendant did commit aggravated murder,” Elkins told White. “That is a class one felony, and it carries mandatory life in prison.”
He also took notice of White’s poor demeanor during the proceedings, warning him that it was a “serious matter,” to which White replied, “…there ain’t much more you can do to me, man”.
During the proceeding, White answered a couple of questions saying “yep” and “nope,” with Elkins at one point telling him to clarify his answers for the record, “I don’t know what ‘yep’ means.”
“Yes,” White said. He also called the judge “bro” twice during the hearing, the Times News reported.
White’s court-appointed attorney, Greg Baker requested a speedy trial, which resulted in the assignment of the April 2022 court dates.
Baker also requested a change in venue, however Elkins told him that matter would have to be further discussed with the attorney at a later date, noting an arraignment was an improper forum for such a request.
White was charged with:
- Aggravated murder
- Felony murder
- Possession of Schedule I/II Substances with Intent to Distribute
- Possession of a Firearm while in Possession of Schedule I/II Substances
- Shooting in Commission of Murder
- Use of a Firearm in Commission of Aggravated Murder
- Possession of a Firearm by a Felon
- Possession of Ammunition by a Felon
- Brandishing a Firearm
- Reckless Handling of Firearms
- Discharging a Firearm in Public
- Disorderly Conduct
The aggravated murder charge on its own calls for a mandatory minimum sentence of life in prison. Unfortunately, the Virginia General Assembly abolished capital punishment earlier this year.
White was arrested after a 16-hour manhunt by Wise County sheriff’s deputies, the Virginia State Police, the U.S. Marshals Service and the Kingsport Police Department. He was found in a motel in Kingsport, officials said.
After White’s arrest, Big Stone Gap Police Chief Steve Hamm spoke out about the incident and praised the deceased officer. He said Chandler’s killer needed to be brought to justice.
“We’d like to see the person or people responsible for this prosecuted to the fullest extent,” Hamm said.
He also spoke highly of his murdered officer:
“He truly wanted to help and make a difference in his community,” Hamm said. “He was the type of officer that any department wanted. Everybody knows the risk going into it, but you just don’t want to think her in small-town Southwest Virginia that can be the reality. But it is.”
Law Enforcement Today will update this case as additional info becomes available.
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