I am Tom Freeland, a lawyer in Oxford, Mississippi. The picture in the header is my law office. I'm on Twitter as NMissC

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A Gov. Barbour felony DUI pardon recipient is in jail after yet another DUI that lead to the death of a teenager

Update: Welcome new readers. This post is one of a series on the last-day pardons by Gov. Babour.  The most recent seven or eight posts are about these pardons.  The most recent post asks why Civil Rights martyr Clyde Kennard is still denied a pardon; there are several posts about the murder  or homicide cases in the pardon list (here here here and here), and a post describing the cases were people still serving time were pardoned.

Harry Bostick of Oxford got a timely pardon.  I wonder if the decision makers in the Governor’s mansion know how timely– he’s sitting in jail on a parole revocation, the petition to revoke for which says he violated by being “arrested with new charges of felony DUI… and possession of beer in vehicle in Pontotoc County,” and that he refused a Breathalyzer test on October 7th in Pontotoc.

Yesterday, he got an absolute pardon from a felony DUI. Here’s what the pardon says:

WHEREAS, Harry Russ Bostick, was sentenced on or about May 28, 2010 in Lafayette County, Mississippi under Cause No. LK09-123 for the felony crime of DUI 3rd Offense,’ and

WHEREAS, Harry Russ Bostick was sentenced to five (5) years in the Intensive Supervision Program (ISP) with one (1) year to serve in ISP while also participating in Lafayette County Drug Court to completion for a term not to exceed five (5) years. Four (4) years ISP was suspended upon the successful completion of one (l) year ISP and the Drug Court Program. Bostick was ordered to pay a fine of $2,000.00 and Court costs of $454.00.

WHEREAS, Harry Russ Bostick was placed in the Drug Court Program beginning on or about March 4, 2011. His estimated release date from the Drug Court Program, assuming no sanctions, is March 4, 2013….

You might ask, what was the deal on that October 7th DUI arrest and refusal to take a Breathalyzer?  Here’s an October 8th story from WTVA:

An Okolona teenager is dead after a two-car accident on Highway 6 in the Furrs community.

County Coroner Kim Bedford said the 911 call was placed at 7:19 Friday night.

Trooper Ray Hall of the Mississippi Highway Patrol says Charity Smith, 18, of Okolona, died as a result of her injuries.

Smith was driving a Buick LeSabre and apparently tried to pull from a private drive onto Highway 278 when she pulled into the path of a 2010 Ford F-150, driven by Harry Bostick, 55, of Oxford.  …

Bostick had minor injuries, but was wearing a seat belt. Authorities say he went to the hospital by private vehicle and was subsequently treated and released.

Hall said charges are pending in the accident, depending on what’s revealed as the investigation continues.

10 comments to A Gov. Barbour felony DUI pardon recipient is in jail after yet another DUI that lead to the death of a teenager

  • Ashley

    Tom,
    Cottonmouth cites the following from section 124 of the Mississippi Constitution:

    “…in cases of felony, after conviction no pardon shall be granted until the applicant therefor shall have published for thirty days, in some newspaper in the county where the crime was committed, and in case there be no newspaper published in said county, then in an adjoining county, his petition for pardon, setting forth therein the reasons why such pardon should be granted.”

    I read the Oxford paper every day, including the classifieds and legal notices and have not noticed anything of the sort. Seems like Harry and Greg Gibbes (those are the only 2 I know of for certain) would have posted in Oxford since their crimes occurred here. Do you have an insight?

  • NMC

    I didn’t see the legal notices, either, but apparently (according to someone at the Eagle), they did run.

  • Ben

    If they ran in the Eagle, they appeared in the tiniest of agate type on some space other than the legal notices.

  • pquinn

    So Barbour pardoned a guy for an earlier DUI conviction who subsequently killed someone (allegedly) in a separate DUI, for which he’s currently in jail for?

  • NMC

    Not “a” DUI conviction, but a felony (that is, third) DUI, and he got a parole revocation because of a fourth DUI in which someone was killed.

  • Chico Harris

    He was back in jail for the Furrs accident and then got a pardon and was released? Am I following that correctly?

  • Floyd Pink

    It appears to me that Tugboat Harry’s pardon was in the works for months before the Governor announced it. (as were most of the pardons) In the meantime, Harry was involved in an accident in which the young lady was killed. From what I understand, she pulled in front of him and he may not have been at fault. However, the Troopers suspected he had been drinking and when he refused the Breathalyzer etc., that was a violation of his parole from his past felony DUI conviction.

    I suspect the Governor’s Office had already put him on the pardon list and the information on the parole revocation never reached them before the pardon’s were announced. It will be interesting to see how all that plays out now.

  • Chico Harris

    I think that is how the accident happened. If he were not able to stop because of being drunk, seems he would be at fault, but I reckon that can’t be known…

  • NMC

    If his fault had any part in the accident (even if it’s primarily hers) there’s potential liability, although I suspect a jury would have trouble convicting if it was primary hers unless they were really angry about the history.

  • Agonyflips

    NMC,
    It would be interesting to see the data from the ‘Black Box’ of Mr. Bostick’s Truck at the time of the accident. I’ve read that vehicle owners have to give permission for such information to be retrieved, but in the case of a DUI, I presume a warrant would be sufficient. Will we have to wait for a trial before any such information about Bostick’s truck computer is made available?

    BTW, NYT directed me here and I’ve been going through your blog and it’s been a fantastic read. Thanks for all your hard work.

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