An 80-year-old inmate who fatally shot his estranged wife and her boyfriend before opening fire on a Youngstown police officer in 1981 will not be released from prison Monday and will remain incarcerated pending the outcome of a Dec. 19 hearing of the full Ohio Parole Board.
JoEllen Smith, a spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, made the announcement Friday concerning Budd William Miller, who is serving 20 years to life at the Pickaway Correctional Institution.
The announcement came after Mahoning County Prosecutor Paul J. Gains sent the parole board a letter of opposition to Miller’s release.
“This individual would indeed pose a danger or threat to anyone he comes in contact with. This is particularly true if he is not in a controlled environment, such as a penal institution,” Gains wrote.
After an Aug. 22 hearing, the parole board decided to release Miller as early as Monday, but it maintained the right to change its position as long as he remained incarcerated, said Mike Davis, an ODRC spokesman.
Miller’s medical condition “makes any risk more manageable in the community. His condition can’t be surgically corrected due to other medical problems, which will limit his mobility,” the parole board said this summer.
Miller was to have been paroled to a Scioto County nursing home and was to have been under Ohio Adult Parole Authority supervision for five years.
Miller’s step-son, Alan Gregory Ray, said he does not condone his step- father’s past violent actions, but he believes Miller should be released.
“He’s 80 years old. Most of his life is gone. At this point, he doesn’t have much life left,” said Ray, 48, who resides in Mishawaka, Ind. “I don’t think he’s a threat at this point,” Ray added.
After killing his wife, Linda, and her boyfriend, Lawrence Turley, on Easter 1981, Miller suffered a self-inflicted gunshot wound to his chest during a gunbattle with Police Officer Tom Parry, who is now a detective sergeant.
When he committed the double murder, Miller was free on bond after a Christmas Eve 1980 incident, in which he inflicted a serious head wound on his 17-year-old step-daughter, Dixie Ray, while trying to shoot his wife, ODRC said.
Miller hasn’t expressed any anger or hostility in his letters to Alan Gregory Ray from prison, said Ray, who has communicated with his step-father by letter and telephone and visited him periodically in prison over the past 28 years.
“There’s not been any trouble since he’s been incarcerated,” Ray concluded.