HIGHLAND (CBSLA.com) — The bag from her wedding day, her pearl earrings, the stories told over and over – that is all Jenny Py-Swafford has from her husband’s aunt, who was a victim of domestic violence.
Jill Swafford, 26, was murdered on March 21, 1986 in Big Bear Lake. She was nine months pregnant with twins.READ MORE: Long Beach Shooting Leaves 2 Men Dead
“She thought that being a mother was the greatest thing a woman could do in her life,” Jenny said as she wept.
The victim’s husband, Samuel Leon Evans, was convicted of three counts of first-degree murder for beating her to death and trying to make it look like an accident.
Evans, a former deputy for the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, was sentenced to 75 years in prison.
Only 30 years later, he is now eligible for parole – much earlier than expected. That is because of a 2014 law that requires inmates be eligible for parole if they are 60 or older and have been in prison for at least 25 years.READ MORE: Raging Dixie Fire Levels NorCal Town
Jenny said: “I cried really hard that night. I just, the injustice of it.”
Now, the Swafford family is doing everything they can to stop Evans from being released from prison. They launched a petition on Change.org to convince Gov. Jerry Brown to deny Evans’ eligibility for parole.
“I’m overwhelmed by how many people who’ve signed the petition,” Jenny said.
The petition has at least 2,500 signatures. Jenny hopes it is enough to influence the next round of decision-makers in Evans’ parole review.MORE NEWS: Republican Gubernatorial Hopefuls Take Debate Stage Wednesday Night
“Knowing Sam is going to be on the street, that’s horrifying,” Jenny added.