Texas governor pardons U.S. Army sergeant convicted of killing BLM protester

Controversy surrounds Travis County DA's handling of evidence in the Daniel Perry case.

Texas governor pardons U.S. Army sergeant convicted of killing BLM protester
Jay Janner/Austin American-Statesman via AP, Pool
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Texas Governor Greg Abbott has granted a full pardon to Daniel Perry, a 35-year-old U.S. Army sergeant who was convicted of murder in Travis County for killing a Black Lives Matter protester who approached his vehicle while armed with an AK-47.

Perry, who maintained he acted in self-defense and immediately turned himself in to law enforcement, had been sentenced to 25 years in prison.

“The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles conducted an exhaustive review of U.S. Army Sergeant Daniel Perry’s personal history and the facts surrounding the July 2020 incident and recommended a Full Pardon and Restoration of Full Civil Rights of Citizenship,” Abbott said in a statement late Thursday. “Among the voluminous files reviewed by the Board, they considered information provided by the Travis County District Attorney, the full investigative report on Daniel Perry, plus a review of all the testimony provided at trial.”

The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles conducted a comprehensive review of Perry's personal history and the facts surrounding the July 2020 incident before recommending a full pardon and restoration of his civil rights. Governor Abbott approved the recommendation, citing Texas' strong "Stand Your Ground" self-defense laws that "cannot be nullified by a jury or a progressive District Attorney."

The case has been mired in controversy, with the lead investigating detective, David Fugitt, accusing District Attorney Jose Garza of engaging in "criminal behavior" by directing the removal of exculpatory evidence from the grand jury presentation, the Daily Wire reported.

Fugitt stated that he was ordered to reduce his original 158-slide PowerPoint presentation to 56 slides, removing almost all exculpatory evidence. He felt compelled to comply with the orders but believed the District Attorney's Office's conduct had crossed the line from unethical to criminal.

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  • By David Menzies

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