Woodmansee Seeks Absentee Ballot

Michael Woodmansee, who was convicted of killing Jason Foreman in 1975, has requested an absentee ballot.

According to The Providence Journal and other media outlets, convicted child killer Michael Woodmansee is seeking an absentee ballot for the November election.

In 1975, Woodmansee confessed to killing Jason Foreman, and was sentenced to 40 years. However, he only served 28 years and was set to be released before voluntarily committing himself. Before committing himself, news of his release caused residents to protest.

According to The Journal, Woodmansee was transferred from the ACI to the Eleanor Slater Hospital in September 2011.

WPRO’s John DePetro interviewed John Foreman, the father of Jason, yesterday afternoon. John Foreman said it was ridiculous that Woodmansee was being allowed to vote. For the audio, click here.

According to The Sentencing Project, a prison reform organization, only Kentucky and Virginia have a lifelong ban on felons from voting, without reinstatement by the governor or legislature (PDF link). Florida and several other states also make convicted felons wait a period of time after their release before restoring voting rights.

In a 1974 decision of the Supreme Court, Richardson v. Ramirez, it was decided that states could restrict the voting rights of convicted felons.

The campaign for Chris Wilkens issued the following statement after learning the news:

Christopher Wilkens, candidate for Rhode Island House of Representatives, District 34 (Wakefield, Peace Dale, Narragansett) calls for a change in the law to prohibit felony convicts from voting.

“In response to the controversy surrounding Michael Woodmansee’s voting rights, I am calling for a change in the law which would limit the voting rights of convicted felons.  If I am elected, I will make it a priority to introduce a bill to ensure that those who are serving sentences for the commission of a felony crime will not be allowed to vote in the State of Rhode Island until such time that their sentence has been fulfilled.”

Ted Geisel October 19, 2012 at 07:55 PM
In 2006 the voters of RI changed the state constitution so that once you're out of prison you can vote. Prior to that you have to be out of prison and off of parole. See here: http://webserver.rilin.state.ri.us/RiConstitution/C02.html The majority of Rhode Islanders thought this was a good idea and the Amendment passed. My understanding it Woodmansee is out of prison and in a mental hospital which would make him eligible to vote. We don't limit the voting rights of the mentally disturbed, to the best of my knowledge.
Ted Geisel October 19, 2012 at 07:56 PM
If you're wondering who came up with the bright idea, it was made possible by: Representative Joseph S. Almeida http://webserver.rilin.state.ri.us/PublicLaws/law05/res05/res05342.htm YEAS - 59: The Honorable Speaker Murphy and Representatives Ajello, Almeida, Amaral, Carter, Church, Coderre, Corvese, Costantino, Crowley, Davey, Dennigan, Diaz, Ehrhardt, Flaherty, Fox, Gallison, Gemma, Giannini, Ginaitt, Handy, Jackson, Jacquard, Kilmartin, Lally, Landroche, Laroche, Lewiss, Lima, Long, Loughlin, Malik, McCauley, McManus, McNamara, Melo, Menard, Moffitt, Moran, Moura, Naughton, O'Neill, Pacheco, Petrarca, Picard, Rice, Rose, Savage, Schadone, Shanley, Singleton, Slater, Story, Sullivan, Trillo, Voccola, Williams, Williamson, Winfield. NAYS - 6: Representatives Brien, Caprio, Gorham, McHugh, Mumford, Watson. Senators Metts, Pichardo, C. Levesque, and Perry http://webserver.rilin.state.ri.us/PublicLaws/law05/res05/res05340.htm YEAS- 26: The Honorable President Montalbano and Senators Alves, Badeau, Ciccone, Connors, DaPonte, Felag, Fogarty, Gallo, Gibbs, Goodwin, Issa, Lanzi, Lenihan, Levesque, Metts, Paiva Weed, Perry, Pichardo, Revens, Roberts, Ruggerio, Sheehan, Sosnowski, Tassoni, Walaska. NAYS- 8: Senators Algiere, Bates, Blais, Breene, Cote, Damiani, Polisena, Raptakis.
Stephen Greenwell October 19, 2012 at 09:07 PM
The Journal has published an update, and the head of Cranston's canvassing board says he will not approve Woodmansee's request: http://news.providencejournal.com/breaking-news/2012/10/cranstons-top-canvassing-officials-says-he-wont-approve-killers-request-to.html
nickp October 20, 2012 at 03:33 PM
i can only sympathize with the woodmansee family every time they have to see this inhuman individuals name and accompanying picture in the media no matter what the circumstances . forcing them to relive this ungodly , tragic event . hopefully, the next time the see his name it will be in an obituary .
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