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Dying inmate paroled: 33 y/o terminally-ill woman with breast cancer paroled

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A dying inmate, paroled Tuesday after spending 18 years in an Iowa prison on a murder conviction, will spend her final days at a hospice facility. Kristina Fetters was just a teenager when she killed a relative and was given a life sentence without parole. However, a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision reversed a ruling and the convicted felon is being released soon after a terminal breast cancer diagnosis.

The terminally ill inmate was paroled in an unprecedented move that essentially said that juveniles should not be subject to such harsh sentences. Critics of the original sentence said it amounted to cruel and unusual punishment for minors.

I would recommend or throw out to the board that perhaps we should wait a little while to see what happens with the treatment for Ms. Fetters ( pictured here ). Her response to treatment may change the kind of re-entry plans that need to be made for her," said Board chair Jason Carlstrom, who didn't initially support the dying inmate's release from prison.

In support of Fetters' release is Doris Kelley, another parole board member, who said the inmate would benefit from hospice care instead of being holed up in a prison that is not thoroughly equipped to deal with terminal patients in cases like this.

Back in September, Fetters received a late-stage IV breast cancer diagnosis. Sources say doctors have stopped short of saying just how long she has left before succumbing to the inoperable malignancy.

The dying inmate paroled was 15 when she beat her 73-year-old great aunt over the head with a skillet and stabbed her numerous times. She was tried, convicted, and has been serving her life sentence at the Mitchellville Women's Correctional Facility.

At the time of her sentence, Fetters was the youngest inmate to be given life in the state of Iowa. After the landmark ruling on Tuesday, she is now the first to be released under the high court's ruling.

Although the terminally ill prisoner is getting out of jail, there is a catch to her release. For starters, she must have "intense" supervision at the hospice facility. Additionally, if her condition improves over time, the Iowa Parole Board reserves the right to recall her to prison.

A member on the board emphasizes that Fetters is not being released because she was a model prisoner -- she allegedly was not. However, the general consensus is that she would benefit from better care outside prison walls.

Should the dying inmate be paroled?

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