Friday, April 02, 1999

Officer's widow protests parole for killer

The Cincinnati Enquirer

Cheryl Cole-Candelaresi displays a photo of Officer David Cole.
(Glenn Hartong photo)
| ZOOM |
        Newer guidelines might keep Roland Reaves imprisoned until at least 2009 for his role in the shooting death of a Cincinnati officer, the chairwoman of the Ohio Parole Board said Thursday.

        The parole board will determine Mr. Reaves' fate at a May 25 hearing at Chillicothe Correctional Institution.

        Chairwoman Margarette Ghee's comments were encouraging to Cheryl Cole-Candelaresi, who told Ms. Ghee of her life with Officer David Cole during Thursday's victim conference in Columbus.

        “At least there is a lot of hope,” said Mrs. Cole-Candelaresi, who made the trip to Columbus with Hamilton County Prosecutor Mike Allen and Fraternal Order of Police President Keith Fangman.

        Mr. Reaves was convicted along with Ricardo Woods in 1974 for killing Officer Cole. Although Mr. Woods also was originally sentenced to death, the parole board approved his release in 1994.

        Mr. Reaves' and Mr. Woods' original sentences were commuted to life in prison in the 1970s after Ohio's death penalty was struck down.

        The newer parole board guidelines recommend that people who kill police officers serve longer sentences, said Andrea Dean, spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of

        Rehabilitation and Correction.

        “With the parole board guidelines, it's clearly suggested that (Mr. Reaves) has not served enough time,” Ms. Dean said.

        Mr. Allen said Ms. Ghee's comments were reaffirming.

        “We did not expect this. We expected to go in and say our piece.This is a complete unexpected result,” Mr. Allen said.

        “It looks like Mr. Reaves is going to stay where he belongs — and that's in prison for the rest of his life.” But Mr. Fangman said there's still a possibility Mr. Reaves could be paroled.

        “The bottom line: this ain't over 'til it's over,” Mr. Fangman said. “That's why we need, more than ever, letters to be mailed and faxed to the parole board.”

        Officer Cole was shot July 16, 1974, while responding to a radio call about two men outside a convenience store on Florence Avenue. When Officer Cole pulled alongside the men and left his car, Mr. Reaves and Mr. Woods both fired shots that struck the officer.

        • Fraternal Order of Police President Keith Fangman urged people to mail letters to: Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, Victims Section, 1050 Freeway Drive North, Columbus, 43229; or fax, (614) 752-0600. All letters should refer to Mr. Reaves and his ID number: A140827.


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