RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The uproar over Governor Ralph Northam’s recent decision to pardon a Colonial Heights woman convicted of murder continues. A Virginia mom told 8News that the pardon system makes no sense and she wants officials to be held accountable. Her frustration comes after her son, who is behind bars for a lesser crime, was denied a conditional pardon.
“It’s not justice and our justice system truly needs to be revamped,” said King George resident Gail Dietz.
Dietz said her son, 44-year-old Matthew Mosher, committed a crime when he was hooked on opioids and not in his right mind. She thinks it’s unfair that Margaret Blair Dacey, who was imprisoned for the 2013 murder of Rusty Mack in Colonial Heights, is about to walk free.
According to Dietz, Mosher never physically harmed anyone, is now clean and has served most of his time. He remains in jail at Haynesville Correctional Center after his 2020 request for a conditional pardon was denied.
“Mosher led police on a chase. He committed the crimes using an unloaded bb gun,” Dietz said. “Under mandatory sentencing guidelines, he was sent to prison for ten years.”
She said he only has one year left on a 10-year sentence and is very remorseful for what he has done.
“I don’t understand how someone can murder someone, take a life from a loved one and a family and be pardoned,” Dietz said. “After only seven years – not even half her sentence has been served?”
Mosher is a veteran who served nine years in the Coast Guard. During his service, He helped out during Hurricane Katrina and after 9-11.
“He served at 9-11 in New York sifting through the dust and installation and everything for body parts,” Dietz said.
He injured his back in a boating accident while in service and according to his mother, a doctor prescribed him oxycontin for his injuries and he became addicted.
“His addiction just grew – and grew to heroin – and he robbed two convenience stores,” Dietz said.
Mosher also has medical issues, according to his mother. He has one good lung and it is believed he is suffering conditions from his work during 9-11.
Dietz said that her son is taking computer courses, has graduated from several prison rehabilitation programs and wants to counsel other veterans like him. She said he also wants to get back to his two young sons.
“He is clean. He has completely changed since he’s been in there and off the drugs.”
Gov. Northam has said there are still some pardons his office is looking at before his term ends. 8News reached out to the governor’s office and the Secretary of the Commonwealth Kelly Thomasson, and has yet to hear back.