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Keyes murderer ruled suitable for parole

A Keyes man sentenced to prison for helping his brother kill his sister-in-law in 1984 has been found suitable for parole, according to the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office

Richard Dean Morris, 58, of Keyes was found suitable for parole during an Aug. 6 hearing of the State Board of Parole Hearings held in San Quentin state prison.

In 1984, Morris held his sister-in-law down while his older brother Robert strangled her in front of the victim’s four-year-old daughter. While the victim was still struggling to live, Morris put the child back to bed in another room. Both men were convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to serve 25 years-to-life in prison.

In 1986, while incarcerated in Folsom State prison, Morris stabbed another inmate, causing great bodily injury. He was convicted in Sacramento County for that crime and sentenced to serve an additional life prison term consecutive to his original murder sentence.

At the hearing, Deputy District Attorney Blythe Harris argued against parole due to the fact Morris posed an unreasonable risk to public safety if released. The Board of Parole Hearings disagreed finding that Morris qualified for release as a “youthful offender” because he was under the age of 25 when the offenses took place.

Morris had previously been denied parole in 2018 on the grounds that he posed an unreasonable risk to public safety. At that time, the Board of Parole Hearings denied parole for three years. This release comes only 18 months later. Gov. Gavin Newsom can potentially deny Morris’ parole upon further review.