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Clemency granted for fatal shooting

A woman convicted of fatally shooting her boyfriend in the head outside their Turlock home has had her sentence commuted by Gov. Jerry Brown and now granted parole.

Natalie Jaspar, 51, was granted parole during an Oct. 4 hearing of the State Board of Parole Hearings held at the Central California Women’s Facility in Chowchilla.
On Oct. 3, 1998, Jaspar shot her boyfriend, Thomas Hines, in the back of the head as he was walking away. Jaspar was upset because Hines was leaving her. At the time, she stated that she “could not comprehend why her boyfriend was leaving her” after she stood by his side when he needed her to and how she had “greatly sacrificed for the sake of the relationship.”
After the shooting, a witness who had been helping the victim move his belongings out of the house screamed that she had hit the victim, to which Jaspar replied, “Good.”

Jaspar’s defense stated she had battered woman syndrome, but the jury rejected that defense and found her guilty of murder with the use of a firearm. The trial judge also rejected the defense’s theory and sentenced Jaspar to serve 40 years-to-life in state prison.

Jaspar applied to Gov. Brown for clemency and his office found compelling evidence to grant the request. In filing the clemency, the governor’s office said Jaspar had been in an abusive relationship with Hines.

The clemency document stated on the day of the shooting that the couple had gotten into an argument because they were being forced to move. Jaspar threw a motorcycle helmet and hit Hines, who in return struck and kicked Jaspar.

Jaspar’s friends and family stated she had suffered numerous injuries at the hands of Hines, including black eyes, bruises, welts, knots to her head, and missing hair.

A psychologist said Jaspar had experienced violence that was “extensive and pervasive.”

In granting the clemency the governor’s office pointed to the number of self-help classes Jaspar had taken and the respect she had earned from the correctional staff.