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'Status, privilege': Prosecutor, Missouri politicians blast Parson's commutation of Britt Reid

Jonathan Shorman, The Kansas City Star on

Published in Football

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Missouri Gov. Mike Parson’s commutation of former Kansas City Chiefs assistant coach Britt Reid’s prison sentence came under harsh criticism on Saturday, with Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker saying Parson freed a man of “status, privilege and connections.”

Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft, a Republican running for governor, called the decision “not a good look” for Parson.

Reid, the son of Chiefs Coach Andy Reid, was convicted of driving while intoxicated and causing a crash that severely injured a 5-year-old girl in February 2021. He had been serving a three-year prison sentence but will now remain under house arrest through October 2025.

Baker in a statement on Saturday said Parson did not contact those directly affected by the case, including the family of Ariel Young, the 5-year-old girl who spent 11 days in a coma following the crash.

“There simply can be no response that explains away the failure to notify victims of the offender. To Ariel’s family, I offered my resolve to continue to fight for just sentences for those who injure others due to the reckless decision to drink alcohol and operate a motor vehicle,” Baker said.

Baker, a Democrat, contrasted the Republican governor’s decision to offer clemency to Reid with his refusal to not commute the sentences of Kevin Strickland and Lamar Johnson, two Black men who were wrongly imprisoned and later freed.

 

“Finally, to my community, I simply say I am saddened by the self-serving political actions of the Governor and the resulting harm that it brings to the system of justice,” Baker said.

“But my office will fight for just outcomes regardless of social status, privilege or one’s connections. This system of justice still stands and will prevail over any fleeting political knock. Of this I am certain.”

Parson’s office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment on Saturday.

On Friday, Johnathan Shiflett, a spokesman for Parson, said in a statement: “Mr. Reid has completed his alcohol abuse treatment program and has served more prison time than most individuals convicted of similar offenses.”

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