Doc: Former Mayor of NYC David Dinkins Letter to President Obama
October 4, 2011
President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, DC 20500
Dear Mr. President,
I write to join the many Americans and humanitarians worldwide who are calling upon you to exercise your power of clemency to commute Jonathan Pollard's prison sentence to time served. I first recommended that President Clinton consider such action in 1993, and, that failing, now find it necessary to appeal to you.
Mr. Pollard is currently serving the 26th year of a life sentence - seven of the 26 served in solitary confinement. He was indicted on one count of passing classified information to an ally without intent to harm the United States - an offense that ordinarily carries a two-to-four year sentence. He pled guilty under a plea agreement with which he fully complied but that was apparently ignored by the sentencing judge.
I understand that Mr. Pollard is the only person in the history of the United States to receive a life sentence for passing classified information to an ally. While I condemn espionage and do not underestimate the gravity of Mr. Pollard's offense, many feel that his sentence is severely disproportionate, among them former CIA Director Woolsey, former Deputy Attorney General Heymann, and former head of the Senate Intelligence Committee Senator DeConcini.
Mr. Pollard has repeatedly expressed remorse for his actions and, by all accounts, has been a model prisoner. It has been reported recently, nevertheless, that he was denied compassionate leave to attend his father's funeral, and now, after more than two decades of confinement, Mr. Pollard's health is said to be declining.
It is in light of the above that I ask that you consider commuting the sentence of Jonathan Pollard to time served. Thank you for your attention to this matter, Mr. President.
David N. Dinkins