Office of the Governor Rick Perry

Gov. Rick Perry Issues One Pardon for Innocence

Grants Clemency for 14 Others

Wednesday, December 20, 2006  •  Press Release

AUSTIN – Gov. Rick Perry today granted a pardon for innocence to Billy Wayne Miller of Dallas after subsequent DNA testing proved his innocence and the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles favorably recommended his case for clemency.

Miller was convicted of aggravated sexual assault in Dallas County in 1984 at the age of 31. He received a life sentence for this offense. Post-conviction DNA testing showed that Miller was innocent. The district attorney, district judge, sheriff and police chief all supported the pardon.

“I believe that a full pardon for innocence must be supported by strong evidence, such as forensic DNA tests,” Perry said. “In this case, DNA evidence proves Mr. Miller is innocent. The recommendations of the district attorney, district judge, sheriff, police chief, and the Board of Pardons and Paroles also were important factors in my decision.”

Perry also granted clemency for 14 individuals after each case was favorably recommended for clemency action by the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles. Most of these individuals were in their teens or early 20s when they were convicted of minor offenses well over a decade ago.

Clemency was granted to:


  • Robert Earl Brown of Winnsboro, 46, convicted of delivery of a controlled substance, amphetamine, in 1987 and sentenced to 10 years probation. Also in 1987, Brown was convicted of delivery of a controlled substance and sentenced to 10 years probation for the offense. He has been granted a full pardon for each offense. He is now a youth minister.
  • Sharon Rena Burrell of Houston, 48, convicted of shoplifting at the age of 23. She served three days in jail and paid a $400 fine. She has been granted a full pardon.
  • Robert August Coker of San Antonio, 53, convicted of breaking and entering a motor vehicle when he was 18. He was sentenced to three years probation for his offense. He has been granted a full pardon.
  • Larry Grant Dalton of Mansfield, 47, convicted of burglary in 1980 at the age of 20. He paid a $1,000 fine and was ordered to serve five years probation.  He has been granted a full pardon.
  • Domingo Laing Gonzalez Jr. of Kemp, 38, convicted of theft at the age of 17.  He served three years probation and paid a $500 fine and $1,471.62 in restitution for his offense. He has been granted a full pardon.
  • Debby Valerie Jasper of Houston, 54, convicted of shoplifting in 1974. She paid a $25 fine and was sentenced to six months probation and 30 days in jail.  She was 22 at the time of the offense. She has been granted a full pardon.
  • Marius Macovei of Calgary, AB Canada, 32, convicted of resisting arrest in 1997 when he was 23. He paid a $300 fine and served 10 days in jail for his offense. He has been granted a full pardon.
  • Patrick Glenn McGee of Marlin, 40, convicted of burglary of a motor vehicle in 1984, for which he served 90 days in jail and paid a $300 fine. In 1985, he was convicted of possession of marihuana, and served nine days in jail and paid a $200 fine for the offense. McGee was 19 at the time of these offenses. He has been granted a full pardon for each offense.
  • Robert Brent Merrifield Jr. of Buda, 52, convicted of unlawful possession of a narcotic drug in 1970. He was 17 at the time. He served two years probation for the offense. He has been granted a full pardon.
  • Leandro Arjona Moreno Sr. of Taft, 54, convicted of aggravated assault on a police officer in 1973. Moreno was sentenced to probation for one year and paid a $500 fine. He was 21 at the time of the offense and in 1973 the offense was a misdemeanor. He has been granted a full pardon.
  • Daniel Guadalupe Olivarez of Amarillo, 25, convicted of the manufacture and delivery of a controlled substance in 1998. He was sentenced to 12 years in prison. He has been granted a full pardon. This is his second pardon as a result of the investigation into the “Tulia cases.”
  • Stephen Davis Simmons of Austin, 52, convicted in federal court of possession of counterfeit obligations. He served five years probation and paid a $2,000 fine for his offense. He has been granted a restoration of firearm rights.
  • Jeffrey D. Sowell of Austin, 33, convicted of forgery in 1990 at the age of 17. He served four years probation and paid $81.20 in restitution for his offense. He has been granted a full pardon.
  • Dror Zadok of Houston, 58, convicted in federal court on two counts of willfully making and subscribing false income tax returns in 1983 and 1984. He served three years probation and paid a $10,000 fine for his offenses. He has been granted a restoration of civil rights.
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