It's Time 4 Justice
Jun 19, 2023
A Parson pardon would send a clear message to Missourian's, especially those People of Color in the state, and that message is, you have no constitutional rights, "qualified immunity" and the impunity of police officers supersedes those rights.
Jackson County Prosecutor, Jean Peters Baker pins open letter to Gov. Mike Parson regarding a potential pardon of officer convicted of manslaughter in the killing of Cameron Lamb.
JEAN PETERS BAKER Jackson County Prosecuting Attorney
June 13, 2023
Honorable Michael L. Parson
Capitol Building, Room 216
P.O. Box 270Jefferson City, MO 65102
Dear Governor Parson:
Pardons are political actions by design, not devised for the innocent but for the guilty. I amwriting because of numerous reports that suggest you are going to soon pardon former KansasCity Detective Eric DeValkenaere. I am writing to request that you do not pardon him.
DeValkenaere was fairly convicted and sentenced under Missouri law to InvoluntaryManslaughter of Cameron Lamb and Armed Criminal Action. Your pardon now would preemptAttorney General Bailey’s defense of this conviction and subvert the rule of law. The appellate process has not yet concluded. I am aware that you have been lobbied to pardon this officer,even before his trial. I imagine you might view a pardon as a way to support police. But Iexpect this extreme action for the only KCPD officer convicted of fatally shooting a black manwill ignite distrust, protests, and public safety concerns for citizens and for police.The most significant threat to public safety will not come from community protests. Perhaps thegreater long-term harm will be an erosion of our public safety system as fair and just. A pardonof this convicted former police officer will accelerate that distrust that we already see in oursystem. Witnesses don’t want to testify, and victims decline to prosecute their attackers, evenafter suffering great injury. This distrust will only grow when you, as overseer of KCPD, choose a political action over the legal process.
I would urge you to immediately speak with the victim’s family. No one from your office or theAttorney General’s Office has spoken with these victims and they deserve better. Secondly, Iurge you to speak with this community. Convene a public meeting in Kansas City regardingyour proposed actions. Kansas Citians deserve
to be heard.
As I am a public official, this letter is a public document and will be released. I ask again: please
do not use a political action to subvert the rule of law.
Jean Peters Baker, Prosecutor for Jackson County