GOV. QUINN GRANTED DEBRA GINDORF HER CLEMENCY PETITION TODAY MAY 1, 2009 – REDUCING HER SENTENCE FROM LIFE WITHOUT PAROLE TO 48 YEARS. AS THE SENTENCING STATUTES AT THE TIME REQUIRE HER TO SERVE HALF THE SENTENCE, SHE SHORTLY WILL BE RELEASED. THREE PREVIOUS PETITIONS HAD BEEN DENIED BY PREVIOUS GOVERNORS AND HER PRESENT CLEMENCY PETITION WAS SITTING ON GOV. BLAGOJEVIC’S DESK FOR YEARS.
I THANK GOV. QUINN FOR HIS COMPASSION AND MERCY AS DEBRA GINDORF WAS A POSTER CHILD FOR THE WRONGFULLY CONVICTED AND EXCESSIVELY SENTENCED. I STILL BELIEVE SHE WAS NOT GUILTY BY REASON OF TEMPORARY INSANITY DUE TO POST-PARTUM PSYCHOSIS AND ALL THE PSYCHIATRISTS WHO TESTIFIED AGAINST HER 24 YEARS AGO AGREE. I WISH HER WELL AND I’M SURE SHE WOULD THANK ALL HER SUPPORTERS OVER ALL THESE YEARS.
PLEASE WRITE OR CALL GOV. PAT QUINN IN SUPPORT OF PARDON THANKING HIM FOR FINALLY GRANTING THE CLEMENCY PETITION AT:
Quinn, Pat 217-782-6830
OFFICE OF THE GOVERNOR
CAPITOL BLDG RM 207
SPRINGFIELD IL 62706-1150
AN E-MAIL I SENT TO GOV. QUINN TODAY:
I am appalled that former Gov. Blagojevic ignored so many clemency petitions [THOUSANDS]. I am writing to bring to your urgent attention one of the most egregious cases where a person was wrongfully convicted. I wrote a letter several years ago to the Prisoner Review Board as an expert on pediatrics and post-partum psychosis, on her behalf urging clemency.
This case is a national and international embarrassment to Illinois. I urge you to make it your FIRST ACT of clemency ASAP.
Ms. Gindorf was a 20ish single mother of two small children/babies 22+ years ago – she had been abandoned by the father and was very poor. In a psychotic act due to post-partum psychosis and due to EGREGIOUS neglect of friends, family, and the state in not providing her the medical/psychiatric/social service help she needed, she apparently heard voices telling her to kill herself and take her children to heaven with her. She was also deeply depressed about her personal situation.
A family member suffered the same after giving birth two times, but I and family were always there to help her through this time. Unfortunately NO ONE WAS THERE TO HELP MS. GINDORF.
As a result she carefully washed and dressed her children/babies and gave them an overdose of over the counter medication (I’m not completely sure about what medication but that doesn’t matter) and also took an overdose herself. However, being young, uneducated and naive, she didn’t give herself a big enough dose and woke up later finding her children dead.
She was charged and convicted of murder and sentenced to life without parole, because those many years ago the disease of post-partum psychosis was not recognized, and the murder of children always gets no sympathy form a jurors who are so overwhelmed with passion against the murderer that they don’t usually think fairly or rationally.
She was clearly innocent due to temporary insanity from the post-partum psychosis. All the psychiatrists and a half dozen others who have examined her since or who are nationally renowned now support clemency. No where else in the world, let alone the U.S. are we so irrational and harsh in treatment of women with post-partum psychosis who commit crimes. It is a national and international disgrace and a stain on Illinois.
PLEASE SHOW THE WORLD, ILLINOIS, AND MS GINDORF THAT YOU RECOGNIZE THE WRONG DONE TO HER AND GRANT HER A FULL PARDON. I BELIEVE SHE IS ONLY REQUESTING CLEMENCY. Please pull out her clemency petition from the pile and review it first.
In Europe, women with this illness who murder their children are sent to a mental hospital for two years and released. High-profile cases where a woman drowned her five children have resulted in not guilty verdicts due to post-partum psychosis. PLEASE SHOW THE WORLD THAT ILLINOIS IS COMPASSIONATE AND BRING IT INTO THE 21ST CENTURY NOW BY IMMEDIATELY GRANTING A FULL PARDON TO MS. GINDORF. I’m sure she will be shocked if you pardon her and not just release her with clemency.
Gov., I believe you are a rational, honest, and hard-working leader. Please reveal this to the world by taking this action!! I do not know Ms. Gindorf, but she deserves your mercy and a chance to recover some small amount of money from the state for wrongful incarceration and the way she has been mistreated by the courts. 22+ years in prison when she is innocent due to a transient mental psychosis is simply barbaric. Within a year of the “crime” she no longer was a danger to society or anyone. She is punished daily with the knowledge that she took the lives of her children, but has received mental health care and now copes with this reality.
This is a treatable illness that even goes away on its own within 6 mo to a year after the child’s birth and only recurs with pregnancy. It is treatable even after subsequent pregnancies. Ms. Gindorf, due to her age, no longer has the option of pregnancy so she is not a risk to anyone.
I am available for discussion at any time about the details of post-partum psychosis.
May the Lord give you the wisdom and strength to act quickly and boldly to reverse this injustice. I know you have a lot on your plate, but his action is sorely needed and will make you and all of us in Illinois feel a little better about admitting our mistakes. Please give Ms. Gindorf justice.
Linda Lorincz Shelton, Ph.D., M.D.
For more information see: http://www.left-bank.org/FreeDebra/debra-story.htm