Greenwood woman in prison for killing boyfriend denied parole
GREENWOOD COUNTY, S.C. (FOX Carolina) - A Greenwood County woman in prison for killing her boyfriend was denied parole Wednesday morning.
Tiffany Carroll is currently serving a 15-year sentence for voluntary manslaughter after pleading guilty but mentally ill to stabbing her boyfriend, William Jamaal Johnson, to death in 2017. However, officials argued she was in an abusive relationship, and a clinical psychologist later diagnosed her with battered woman syndrome
3 board members voted in favor of parole, while 2 voted to deny. In South Carolina, for certain violent crimes such as the one Carroll is in prison for, two-thirds majority must be reached to grant parole.
There are usually seven members of the board, but one of the spots is currently vacant and another board member was absent from the hearing for a family emergency leaving five members for Wednesday’s hearing.
“I’ve never seen somebody that I personally believe was more entitled to be granted parole under the circumstances, than Tiffany Carroll. So I’m just shocked that they denied her parole again,” said Carroll’s Attorney Travis Moore.
Board members look at more than a dozen criteria when considering parole.
Frank D. Wideman from Greenwood raised concerns about the nature of the crime during deliberations.
“Violence involved in the crime, that’s an issue for me,” he said.
Wideman also referenced a letter he said was from a police chief arguing against parole. FOX Carolina spoke with Greenwood Police Chief TJ Chaudoin who said he did not write a letter, either for or against parole, in this case.
On Friday, Sept. 29, the Greenwood Police Chief later clarified with FOX Carolina that he did send a one-line email with a recommendation of denying parole over a year ago. Chief Chaudoin says he now stands behind the solicitor’s support of granting Carroll parole.
We asked the Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon services if it is standard practice to reference materials submitted in previous hearings. They told us the statement is considered valid until it is updated by the official.
Three people spoke at the hearing, Carroll, Moore, and State Rep. John McCravy, who has been an advocate for her release.
“I put the blame at the feet of this parole board today. Because they had all the information in front of them,” McCravy said in an interview with FOX Carolina after learning the vote.
The board also asked Carroll several questions, including her plans if she were paroled and how she could assure the board she would not commit a crime again.
“If you all give me a chance to go home I can promise you I will never come back in here. I want to have the opportunity to help change other people’s lives as well. Like this has been a lesson that I have learned the hard way. But if you guys give me the chance to go home you won’t ever have to worry about hearing from me again,” said Carroll.
Nobody spoke in opposition of parole at the hearing.
Earlier this year, Carroll’s family began working with Representative John McCravy to try and get her pardoned. However, the Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services later ruled that Carroll couldn’t receive a pardon because she is currently eligible for parole. The Department stated that South Carolina law says in the event of extraordinary circumstances, an inmate must be considered for a pardon before they are parole-eligible.
Moore filed a motion after the hearing for the board to reconsider its decision, citing only five members being present, several witnesses not able to participate in the hearing due to issues with the WebEx, and the board not taking into consideration the position of the sentencing judge.
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