(CN) – California prosecutors who argued during a parole hearing against the release of a woman who had satisfied a plea agreement are absolutely immune from the woman’s claims for intentional interference with a contract, the 9th Circuit ruled.
After being found guilty of first-degree murder for shooting her husband, Liza Brown entered into an oral plea agreement when a prosecutor stated that she’d be released in seven and a half years if she followed prison disciplinary rules.
Prosecutors at Brown’s parole hearing recommended that she remain in prison.
Affirming the district court’s ruling, the federal appeals court in Pasadena, Calif., ruled that the prosecutors, state agencies and the parole board are immune from Brown’s claims.
“We join our sister circuits in holding that prosecutors should be afforded absolute immunity for parole recommendations, because parole decisions are a continuation of the sentencing process,” Judge Rawlinson wrote.