On July 8th Thomas D Toney was abducted at gun point from Foodland grocery store on 13th Street in Ashland Kentucky by a felon named Roy Pearce. He was forced to drive to an abandoned industrial park where he was tied to a tree. He was initially told to yell for help once Pearce left and someone should find him. When Pearce attempted to leave, the van he was stealing from Tom Toney became stuck in the mud. When this happened, Pearce became enraged and began shooting near Tom’s legs and then shot him in the leg. Once that happened, Pearce walked up and shot Tom in the back of the head. Pearce then went on the run where he was captured in Michigan hiding under a bed at his sister’s home On July 19th which would have been Tom’s 50th birthday. Tom had been classified as a missing person since July 8th. Pearce did not help authorities find Tom until he secured a deal that took capitol punishment off the table. At which time authorities used the map drawn by Pearce to find Tom 33 days after his abduction and Murder. Pearce was sentenced to 25 years to life.
In November 2020 Pearce came before the parole board for his first parole hearing. At which time he was denied parole and given a serve out which means, he was to serve out the remainder of the life sentence and would never come up for parole again. In April 2021, the Kentucky department of corrections issued a new directive stating that anyone coming up for parole for the first time can no longer receive a serve out and the most they could be deferred is 10 years. That means that they can now get a new hearing 10 years after they received the serve out. This directive was retroactive sometimes going back decades. This means families that have lived through similar nightmares and then re lived them through the parole process, who were assured that part of their living hell was over, now must re live this again. There are 45 inmates currently who now are eligible for new parole hearings after been given a serve out. So many families who have to endure this process for at least the 2nd time. As having lived through this last year, I don’t want to go through this again and don’t want any other families to either. As of today, I have been unable to get any answers to why or who made this bad decision from the state. Please take a minute to sign our petition to let the department of corrections and anyone else that may be responsible for this horrific decision that this must not stand. Families of the victims do not need to be put through this again.
David E. Toney