On Dec. 15, Gov. Crist Commuted Sentence of Non-Jewish Killer Named Martin


cristFrom TambaBay.com on December 15, 2009: Jennifer Martin, who was convicted of manslaughter in a 1998 car crash that killed a passenger, had her sentenced cut in half Tuesday by Gov. Charlie Crist. She will be released Wednesday from prison.

Martin, 30, was sentenced in 2000 to 16 years in prison for her role in the Interstate 4 crash that killed Josh Nicola, 23, and severely injured Scott Schutt, 23.

Crist’s decision followed a clemency hearing last week at which Martin’s former prosecutor had sought mercy. Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink had championed Martin’s clemency bid after reading a story in the St. Petersburg Times.

The other two members of the state’s clemency board, Agriculture Commissioner Charles Bronson and State Attorney General Bill McCollum, also voted to commute Martin’s sentence.

 {Tampa Bay.com/Noam Amdurski-Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. Matzav:
    Please tell me that your eyes aren’t so blinded as to think there’s any similarity to Grossman.
    Have you forgotten he blew a young womans brains out? Or is he the victim?

  2. What’s you’re point these cases aren’t remotely similar.this posting is creating discord between us an the law enforcement community.the problem with the grossman case is we waited too long to get involved.we should have rallied the case at the begining when it first became a death penalty case.

  3. I’m not sure I see the comparison between the Grossman case and this one. You’re grasping at straws to demonize Governor Crist. How pathetic!

  4. I beg you to stop with the thinly veiled accusations of anti-semitism. You make it seem as if this woman was spared because she was not Jewish while Grossman was killed solely because he was.

    The fact is that the Grossman case was turned in to a national issue. In so doing, those responsible unwittingly galvanized the law enforcement community of the entire United States. There was no way they were going to allow a cop killer to be spared.

    Had the effort to save Mr. Grossman been conducted QUIETLY and a substantial monetary payment been made QUIETLY to the family of the slain officer, they could have been convinced to QUIETLY ask the Governor to switch Mr. Grossman from death row to life-in-prison. It would have happened in the blink of an eye.

    But QUIETLY does not suit the blog world, the “organizational” world or the newspaper / media world.

    THEY killed Mr. Grossman; not the Governor of Florida or even the fellow who injected the final poison!

    Our wonderful community, who poured out their hearts and souls in prayer and letters, were all swept along in the tidal wave of the hype. They all wanted to do the right thing. But no one asked Daas Torah. And by the time the fingers were pointing at our Torah leaders and Agudath Yisroel in accusation – “How can you stand by the wayside as a Jew is murdered?! – they simply signed on because it was already too late to do what had to be done the right way.

    Think about it.

  5. Thanks for posting this story We see very clearly where this Governor was heading when he refused to even meet with the rabbis pleading on martin Grossmans behalf he only has a heart for non jews, much like many jew haters before him that almost saw it as a mitzvah to have a jew killed so dear Governor shame on you and I surely hope you learn your lesson

  6. So what? Each case is carefully considered on its merits.

    Lemaan HaShem, morai verabosai: I implore you please do NOT start any sort of rash action that may hurt the cause of Yiddishkeit throughout America and beyond.

  7. This is a cheap shot and is totally unrelated to what Maritn Grossman did. This was a car crash, not a horrificshooting and beating death of an innocent officer. Shame on you. NO anti-semitism happened on the part of Governor Crist, and to imply otherwise is illogical, wrong, and totally rooted in emotional mob-rule/group thought. Get real.

  8. Great Job Mr. Crist, granting clemency to a killer the DAY AFTER ignoring thousands of requests for the reversal of execution orders for Mr. Grossman.
    I believe you just buried your dream of ever becoming a Senator. What a two-face. Why couldn’t you wait until the dust settles on the Grossman case before slapping us in the face with this?

  9. These 2 cases have nothing in common, while it is tragic that M grossman was executed you have to remember who he killed a park ranger which is a goverment employee, those cases get prosecuted to the fullest extent.

  10. Absolutely ridiculous headline. This was not a case of anti-semitism. What about the “non Jews” that did not have their sentences commuted. Besides vehicular manslaughter is far less of a charge that Murder 1. Sorry try again.

  11. Florida law imposes the death penalty if any of 11 “aggravating circumstances” exist. FOUR were present in this case:
    (a) The capital felony was committed by a person under sentence of imprisonment or placed on community control.
    (e) The capital felony was committed for the purpose of avoiding or preventing a lawful arrest or effecting an escape from custody.
    (g) The capital felony was committed to disrupt or hinder the lawful exercise of any governmental function or the enforcement of laws.
    (j) The victim of the capital felony was a law enforcement officer engaged in the performance of his official duties.

    Florida law also allows for seven certain mitigating circumstances, NONE of which were extant in this case. Being under the influence of drugs or alchohol is NOT considered a mitigating circumstance, neither is the absence of premeditation, which is considered as only ONE of the 11 aggravating circumstances.

    I’m sorry but, objectively speaking, there is no comparisson between the two cases. I’m no fan of Charlie Crist (and I’m a registered Republican), but given the facts and the applicable laws of the two cases, he had FAR more latitude with Martin than he did with Grossman.

    Jennifer Martin was speeding and lost control of her car. In the resulting crash, a passenger was killed. Though she had no intention to cause anyone harm, let alone their death, she was clearly responsible, was rightfully convicted and and spent the last eight years of her life in prison.

    Martin Grossman, a man with a criminal record and on probation, assaulted a wildlife officer half his size, first beating her and then shooting her in the head (clear homicdal intent — no one shoots someone in the head to NOT kill them) in order to prevent her from arresting him for what would also have been a violation of his probation (he had a firearm in his possession).

    One can argue the merits of clemency — or lack thereof — in each case, and one can argue the merits of capital punishment per se, but to compare the two cases is absurd: an otherwise law abiding citizen, through negligence, has an accident that unintentionally results in someones death versus a carreer criminal who willfully and maliciously beats and shoots a law-enforcement officer.

    Further absurd is the implication of anti-semitism (after all, he granted clemency to the NON-Jew). Florida law does not and cannot take a person’s religion into account in determining guilt or proper sentencing. How would we react if the VICTIM had been Jewish and the perpetrator, say, a born-again christian? Would we be crying “anti-semitism” if Crist HAD granted clemency?

    The law of the land is the law. Grossman committed a capital crime and was, by law, appropriately sentenced. As saddened as I am by his execution, I am even more saddened by the crime he committed. Perhaps his death is
    his teshuva. That is not for me — or you — to judge.

    Baruch Dayan Emess

  12. Enough already, please. We did our hishtadlus and it wasn’t meant that his life should be spared. Let’s stop with this vitriol against the government.

  13. The only comparison that could be made in these two cases is the name Martin. Even that isn’t straight forward. Martin was her last name and his first.

  14. Whether she was even responsible for their deaths is questionable; she was sober, but they chose not to wear their seatbelts (had they done so, they apparently probably would’ve avoided death/serious injuries)

  15. I don’t think the two cases are similar other than they both have Martin in their names. So I think you are right. He should have pardoneded MARTIN Grossman because he pardoned Jennifer MARTIN. BTW, are we allowed to mention womens names? I think you should just say J. MARTIN in the future. You never know what thoughts may enter mens minds by reading womens names!!

  16. Is anyone here familiar with the Kasey Anthony case in Florida? This lady truly “deserves” the death penatly. She is in holding awaiting a trial for murdering her own sweet little 3 year old daughter. She threw her body in a swamp near their home in Florida.
    Question is why prosecutors declined from seeking the death penatly? The police have evidence it was premeditated as she had been searching on the internet months before for ways of breaking a neck or for purchasing chloraform. Florida’s justice system is not just.

  17. This is irresponsible reporting.

    You are feeding those who see any action against a Jew as anti-semitism.

    The world is not black and white. Not every Jew is a saint and not every action against Jews is rooted in anti-semitism.

    Articles like this one and comments like the ones above are an embarrassment on the Jewish people.

  18. Whether Crist was right or wrong in the case of Martin Grossman can be debated, but waht does that case have to do with a case of an unintentional murder?

  19. To all those who say that Martin Grossman deserved to be executed:
    Had he committed his crime in NY where the death penalty is not instituted, would you have agreed that one life sentence in jail (20 years)suffices?
    If your reply is affirmative, then I ask: Is it the “crime” that is deserving or the “location” of the crime??
    The Torah does not have such criteria.
    If Yankel goes free in Jerusalem, Berel doesn’t get hanged in Teveria for the same crime.

  20. I would like to take back what I said with regards to the comparison of the two cases overhere the woman lost control and so she very possibly shouldnt be blamed and deserves a reduced sentence but what should concern every jew here in reality is that we had to rally on martin Grossmans behalf because thats what the torah tells us to do even when the law is totally against him and according to the law he deserves to die as long as halachicly he doesnt deserve to die since sanhedrin have not paskind so we are michuyiv to rally on his behalf now being rude to the Governor judging him and comparing him to jew haters is wrong but we are all very upset how he absolutely ignored every email and phone call from every rabbi on martins behalf what harm could have come out of addressing the points in question including the psycheateric evaluation. Ignoring all these facts and refusing to listen anyone addressing it, is blatant anti semitisim

  21. #31

    Do you understand the idea of individual state’s powers?

    Should I not pay my taxes because they’re lower elsewhere?

    Of course not – when you enter into a society, assuming its laws are just, you agree to accept them. The law in the US varies from state to state, but they are all just versions of the law.

  22. Crist is an anti-Semite, plain and simple. He hates the fact that he can’t do well in S. Florida because they are not Republicans.

    I’d love to see him try and visit Israel and see him be openly told he is NOT welcome!

  23. You guys are freaking twisted. The Governor’s power to commute is on a case by case basis. Unless you have evidence that his actions were motivated by anti-Semitic views, you are all crazy and delusional.

    The man you have all rallied around is a convicted AND admitted cop killer. I have no problem with people writing letter, but to compare it to a vehicular homicide case is bizarre.

    Cop Killers normally don’t get their sentences commuted for finding religion, whether is is Nation of Islam, Evangelical Christianity, or Orthodox Judaism.