- The Washington Times - Wednesday, January 27, 2010

LOS ANGELES | Gregory Powell has been denied parole 47 years after he kidnapped and killed a Los Angeles police officer in a case made famous by a book and movie called “The Onion Field.”

A California Board of Prison Terms panel found the 76-year-old Powell unsuitable for parole Wednesday after a hearing at the California Men’s Colony at San Luis Obispo. It was his 12th parole hearing.

Deputy District Attorney Alexis de la Garza, who was at the hearing, said the denial was for three years.

Powell and a co-defendant, Jimmy Lee Smith, were convicted of kidnapping Officer Ian Campbell during a traffic stop in Hollywood and killing him in an onion field near Bakersfield in March 1963. Their death sentences were commuted to life in prison after the death penalty was briefly outlawed in the 1970s. Smith died in prison in 2007.

The crime was chronicled in Joseph Wambaugh’s best-selling book.

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