Governor Sam Brownback on Tuesday issued an executive pardon to Mark Schmitt, a native of Liberal, Kan., currently residing in Parker, Colorado.
According to a news release, Brownback at the same time denied 72 other requests for executive clemency. The pardon granted is the first and only pardon signed to date by Governor Brownback.
Mark Schmitt was convicted of felony theft in 1994, stemming from a false insurance claim amounting to $1,551.64.
Schmitt at the time was a 19-year-old college student, living in Ottawa. He has since completed his sentence and has been in good legal standing for the last 23 years.
Franklin County District Court previously expunged his conviction and his pardon request was favorably recommended by the Prisoner Review Board.
“This request for clemency was unanimously supported at all levels of the process,” said Brownback in a news release. “He has demonstrated he is a man of character, having already paid his debt to society, having had his criminal record expunged, and having worked through the process of requesting a pardon, and proving the worthiness of his request at every step.”
Schmitt first sought a pardon under the Parkinson administration, but his application was lost. He reapplied under Brownback’s administration.
A list of the 72 clemency applications that have been denied can be viewed here.
Brownback teased the “unprecedented” announcement in a tweet Tuesday morning.
— Sam Brownback (@govsambrownback) October 10, 2017
Brownback on October 3 appeared at Senate confirmation hearing in Washington D.C. to approve his appointment to be President Donald Trump’s Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom.
Senate approval will require Brownback to vacate the governor’s office. He will be replaced by Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer.