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Victims, families outraged by NC inmates’ release

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RALEIGH — Crime victims and their families are bracing for the release next week of 20 North Carolina felons who had been sentenced to life in prison.

A killer named Bobby Bowden argued that a 1970s law defined a life sentence as 80 years. Lawmakers later changed it, but he says he’s served his time because it was in effect when he was sentenced and he has also earned good behavior credits.

The state Supreme Court agreed, saying Bowden and 19 others sentenced under the old law should be freed.

One of the two people Bowden killed during a 1975 convenience store robbery was Pam Hurley’s mother. She describes his scheduled release on Oct. 29 as “a nightmare.”

Bowden’s attorney, Staples Hughes, says Bowden realizes people are angry and doesn’t want to discuss it.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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Crime victims and their families are bracing for the release next week of 20 North Carolina felons who had been sentenced to life in prison.

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