A dozen area inmates will have parole hearings next month.
A Topeka man convicted in Douglas County of participating in the 1981 murder of a Topeka woman is one of a dozen state prison inmates convicted in local courts who will be considered for parole in May.
LV Luarks Jr. was convicted in December 1981 of second-degree murder in the death of Terry L. Brown. He currently is serving 15 years to life in the Hutchinson Correctional Facility.
Testimony during the trial indicated that Brown, then 25, was shot to death in August 1981 in retaliation for the alleged burglary of the Topeka home of Gwyndolyn McNair. McNair was convicted of first-degree murder in Brown's death.
Department of Corrections records indicate Luarks has been paroled twice before on the murder conviction, in March 1992 and in March 1994. Both times he was returned to the penitentiary as a parole violator with no additional sentence.
In July 1994 he was released to Sedgwick County where he was convicted on three drug-related charges. He was returned to the penitentiary in September 1994 with an additional 37-month sentence for the drug convictions.
Bill Miskell, public information officer for the DOC, said that under sentencing guidelines when Luarks is granted parole on the murder charge he will then be returned to prison to serve the 37-month sentence from Sedgwick County.
Following is a list of other inmates who were convicted in local and area courts whose parole hearings also are scheduled in May. The list includes the county or counties in which they were convicted, the crimes for which they were convicted and the facility where they are incarcerated:
- Arthur Stennis, Douglas, attempted aggravated robbery, El Dorado Correctional Facility.
- Scott F. Koons, Douglas, attempted aggravated robbery and robbery, Ellsworth Correctional Facility.
- Donald C. Eteeyan, Douglas, battery, Lansing Correctional Facility.
- James A. Gragg, Douglas, aggravated incest, Lansing Correctional Facility.
- Charles E. Byford, Johnson and Douglas, aggravated sodomy and indecent liberties with a child, Lansing Correctional Facility.
- Saymoung Suady, Douglas, theft and two counts of aggravated robbery, Lansing Correctional Facility.
- Lawrence Austin Jr., Sedgwick and Douglas, burglary, two counts of aggravated assault, unlawful possession of a firearm, theft, Norton Correctional Facility.
- Joe L. Hunter, Douglas and Shawnee, aggravated burglary, unlawful use of a credit card, making a false writing and forgery, Norton Correctional Facility.
- Deondo D. Russell, Douglas and Shawnee, aggravated robbery and involuntary manslaughter, Norton Correctional Facility.
- Southakone Senthavy, Douglas, aggravated robbery, Osawatomie Correctional Facility.
- Waunita A. Runyan, Shawnee and Douglas, two counts of taking indecent liberties with a child, Topeka Correctional Facility.
The parole board has scheduled public comment sessions to gather input on whether to grant parole to these and other inmates.
The sessions are scheduled:
- 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. April 24 in the county commission room on the second floor of the Wyandotte County Courthouse, 710 N. Seventh St., Kansas City, Kan.
- 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. April 25 in the auditorium on the second floor of the Center for Historic Research, 120 W. 10th, Topeka.
People who would like to comment about the inmates but cannot attend one of the public comment sessions can send a letter to: Kansas Parole Board, Landon State Office Building, 900 Jackson, Room 452-South, Topeka, 66612-1220.