A convicted murderer dying of breast cancer is being given a compassionate release to hospice care.
In 1995 Kristina Fetters was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for murdering her great aunt. Fetters was 14-years-old at the time of the crime.
Her sentence was recently reviewed and changed to life in prison with the possibility of parole.
In September doctors diagnosed her with inoperable Stage Four breast cancer.
Friends and family had been urging the parole board to release her so she can spend her final days with her family.
After hearing from a doctor who had reviewed her case, a family member, and a victim who released a statement in a closed session the Board of Parole decided to release Fetters to hospice care.
A number of things played into the board's decision.
A doctor reviewing the case says Fetters is responding to cancer treatment while at the prison hospice facility. However, the board agreed she would receive better care on the outside.
The board also considered her behavior inside prison. Board members noted she hadn't been a model inmate in prison and hadn't gone through re-entry programs. But they determined she wasn't a threat to society due to her condition.
We spoke to Nancy Olson, who is Fetters’ aunt. She was in tears after the parole board granted Kristina her release.
“This has been a 19 year old tragedy for my family. This will bring closure for my family. This will help us all cope a little bit better with the situation,” says Olson.
Fetters was not present at the hearing. She was at the prison in Mitchellville with her mother when the decision was made.
The board made it very clear that this release was to hospice care only. If her condition was to improve and she was no longer eligible for hospice care, her case would be reviewed.
The board would then determine whether to release her or return her to prison.
The conditions of Fetters’ release still need to be finalized and approved by the 5th Judicial District. It could be up to two weeks before Fetters is moved to hospice care.