- Associated Press - Monday, March 22, 2021

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter announced Monday he’s hiring a former U.S. attorney to look into allegations against the state’s Pardon and Parole Board.

Hunter said in a press release that former Eastern District of Oklahoma U.S. Attorney Brian Kuester will lead the probe. Because Hunter’s office represents the state in clemency hearings before the board, he determined an outside counsel should look into the claims.

Earlier this month, Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater sued the Pardon and Parole Board, alleging the panel is not following state law on notifying prosecutors about commutations it is considering. Prater also alleges two of the board’s five members, Kelly Doyle and Adam Luck, have a conflict of interest because of their work with released inmates.

Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt has also ordered an Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation inquiry into whether the board followed state law and its own rules when it recommended Lawrence Anderson for release. Anderson, who was released from prison in January as part of a mass commutation effort, is accused of committing a triple slaying in Chickasha just weeks after his release.

Hunter said Kuester will work with the OSBI on his investigation.

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