May 5, 2016
ALBANY, NY – State Senator Tom O’Mara (R, Big Flats) and Assemblyman Phil Palmesano (R, Corning) today joined legislative
colleagues and family members of murder victims, including the parents of Derrick Robie of Savona (Steuben County), to call for the approval of
legislation they co-sponsor that would allow the state Parole Board to extend the time period that murderers and other violent felony offenders
have to wait to apply for a parole hearing.
The legislation is sponsored by Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R-Port Jefferson) and Assemblyman Fred W. Thiele, Jr. (I,D,WF-Sag Harbor). In
addition to O’Mara and Palemsano, regional co-sponsors of the measure include Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb (R,C-Canandaigua), and
Assemblymen Gary Finch (R,C,I-Springport), Joe Giglio (R,C,I-Gowanda) and Bob Oaks (R,C-Macedon).
Sponsors and supporters of the measure, including Dale and Dori Robie, Derrick’s parents, who appeared at today’s news conference in
Albany, argue that the longer time frame would help spare the families of victims from having to repeatedly, every two years, relive the events that
took the lives of their loved ones — as well as to further help prevent any chance that a heinous criminal will be granted an unwarranted, early
release from prison.
Dale and Dori Robie said, “We are in total support of this important legislation and appreciate the efforts being made by state legislators to
have it become law. We are committed to working with them to secure its enactment in Derrick’s memory and so that other families like ours, whose
lives have been forever changed by a violent criminal, do not have to relive their ordeal every two years.”
Robie was four years old in August 1993 when he was killed by Eric Smith, then 13, in a wooded area near Robie’s home in Savona. Smith was
convicted of second-degree murder in 1994 and sentenced to nine years to life in prison. He’s currently incarcerated at the maximum-security
Collins Correctional Facility outside Buffalo.