Indiana pardon requests have dwindled with state law change

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb speaks during a bill signing ceremony at the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy in Plainfield, Ind., Monday, Aug. 16, 2021. Holcomb told reporters afterward that he supported the growing number of Indiana school districts issuing mask mandates for students and staff as they try to head off more COVID-19 outbreaks. (AP Photo/Tom Davies)

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb (AP Photo/Tom Davies)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb issued seven pardons to convicted criminals during his first year in office, including a man who spent eight years in prison despite evidence he was wrongly convicted of armed robbery.

Holcomb, however, hasn’t granted any more pardons in the past 3-1/2 years as officials say the number of pardon applications has declined to a trickle. Officials say Indiana’s expungement law adopted in 2013 has meant fewer people seeking pardons as that process of asking a judge to clear past convictions is both simpler and more private.

Holcomb rejected three pardon applications in 2018, but none have reached his desk since then.

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