- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 4, 2015

A Missouri man serving out a life sentence for what he believes is a victimless crime faces his first parole hearing this week, thanks to a limited commutation granted by Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon.

Jeff Mizanskey became ensnared by Missouri’s three-strikes law in 1993 when he was convicted of aiding and abetting possession with intent to distribute 7 pounds of marijuana. He previously pleaded guilty in 1984 to possession and selling an ounce and in 1991 to possessing 2 and 3 ounces, U.S. News reported.

Many believe his life sentence is an injustice, and his son launched an online petition that gathered nearly 400,000 supporters.

Rather than a pardon or commutation to time served, Mr. Nixon, a Democrat, decided in May to make Mr. Mizanskey eligible for parole, which his original sentence did not allow, U.S. News reported.

Mr. Mizanskey is set to go before the state parole board on Thursday.

“It’s not a sure thing, but I’m optimistic and I think everyone who’s familiar with the system is optimistic,” said attorney Dan Viets, who will represent Mr. Mizanskey at the hearing, U.S. News reported.

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