Lawmakers: ODRC decision to not track convicted rapist with GPS "unacceptable"


COLUMBUS (WBNS) -- Two state lawmakers say they are "shocked" and "appalled" by the findings of a 10 Investigates special report that uncovered why the state of Ohio decided not to place a GPS ankle monitor on convicted rapist Anthony Pardon, despite an order from a Georgia judge.

Anthony Pardon was arrested in February on charges of kidnapping, rape and murder for the death of 24-year old Rachael Anderson, who Columbus police say was tortured and died in Columbus apartment.

Pardon has pleaded not guilty, but his arrest underscores another failure on the part of the state's parole system to closely watch the most violent offenders - an issue that 10 Investigates has been covering for more than a year. He has a lengthy criminal history that includes two convictions of rape in Ohio.

Prior to moving to Georgia in 2006, Pardon spent 25 years in prison in Ohio on charges of attempted murder and rape.

Pardon, who most recently spent the past nine years in a Georgia prison on charges of forgery and failing to register as a sex offender, returned to Ohio last summer to serve out his probation as part of an interstate compact agreement between the states.

A Georgia judge had ordered Pardon to serve 20 years on probation and two "wear an ankle monitor and pay for all expenses." But that never happened.

Documents uncovered by 10 Investigates show that the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction told Georgia officials they could not comply with that request because the state was "unclear on the length" and noted there was an "expense issue."

ODRC officials have not responded to repeated requests by 10 Investigates for clarity on this matter.

"It's unacceptable. We should be paying to protect our public. If he is being transferred up here, we as taxpayers should pay for that. If he has funds to pay us back, great. But not having one because of cost is not acceptable," Rep. Jim Hughes, R - District 24, during an interview Friday morning.

Rep. Kristin Boggs, D - District 18, told 10 Investigates: "That is incredibly troublesome to me."

State representatives Kristin Boggs and Jim Hughes are primary sponsors of the Reagan Tokes Act, which seeks to fix problems with ex-offenders on GPS.

The bill is named after the Ohio State student who was kidnapped, raped and fatally shot by Brian Golsby, a convicted sex offender who was on GPS but not closely monitored.

The two murders are eerily similar, which is why these two lawmakers are troubled by 10 Investigates' findings.

When asked if this was another failure on the part of the state's parole system, Boggs said: "Absolutely."

Hughes added: "There's no other way to explain it."

Bogg said: "It's indefensible that we would have recommendations from another state that we failed to comply with."

10 Investigates also placed a call with the Georgia judge this week. His secretary said he likely was unaware that his order had not been followed and that he probably would not comment. We have not heard back.

DRC has not responded to our questions about Pardon's supervision. A department spokeswoman has only said that Pardon was on probation through the Adult Parole Authority as part of the interstate compact agreement. There's been no response to 10 Investigates' emails requesting comment this week.

"They need to explain themselves in terms of what happened with this," Hughes said. "Being silent on this is not acceptable."