Prison leaders deny release for deputy's killer

By The Associated Press

GREENWOOD — State prison officials have denied a medical release for a man who killed a Leflore County sheriff’s deputy.

The Mississippi Department of Corrections had considered allowing Earnest Conrod, 79, to leave prison, the Greenwood Commonwealth reports.

Conrod was sentenced to life after pleading guilty in part to avoid the possibility of execution.

Corrections Commissioner Chris Epps had said inmates are routinely considered for medical release when they become bed-bound. Such releases can save the prison system money on medical treatment.

The widow of Deputy Melvin “Buster” Brown, who Conrod shot and killed in 1994, had opposed release. Shirley Brown-Newell, the widow, had rallied opposition to Conrod’s release after receiving a letter stating it was possible. Epps had said he almost always sides with the wishes of the victim’s family.