25 years after Smart murder, William Flynn and Patrick Randall paroled from prisonStaff Report
June 04. 2015 8:14PM
MANCHESTER — The teenage triggerman and his buddy who held a knife to Gregg Smart’s throat as he was shot to death May 1, 1990, were released from prison Thursday, but William “Billy” Flynn and Patrick “Pete” Randall, both now 41, will be on lifetime parole.
A spokesman for Pamela Smart, 47, the woman convicted of persuading her teenage lover to kill her husband, released a statement saying it’s not fair that the two men who admitted their roles in Gregg Smart’s murder are free, while she remains in prison with no chance of parole.
New Hampshire Corrections Department spokesman Jeff Lyons said Flynn, who pleaded guilty to second-degree murder for shooting his lover’s husband, was released from prison in Maine shortly after midnight on Wednesday. He will remain in Maine.
Randall, who had been living at the prison’s halfway house in Manchester and working in Manchester for the past year, was released at 7:40 a.m. Thursday. Randall is barred by parole conditions from certain communities in the state, at the request of Gregg Smart’s family, but the parole board refused to bar him from living and working in Manchester.
Vince Lattime Jr., who drove the getaway car, and Raymond Fowler, who remained in the car during the murder, were previously paroled.
Eleanor Pam, a supporter of Pamela Smart and wife of Smart’s attorney, said of Flynn and Randall: “Over and over they have been rewarded for their expressions of contrition for killing Gregory Smart. But it is one thing to say you are remorseful and another to be remorseful. Pamela Smart, on the other hand, has been condemned and punished for her failure to admit any role in the murder of her husband ... But how can anyone take responsibility for a crime they did not commit?”
Flynn, who was 16 at the time of the murder, testified in Rockingham County Superior Court that Pamela Smart, who was a media coordinator at Winnacunnet High School in Hampton, threatened to break off their relationship if he didn’t kill her husband. He said she didn’t want to divorce her husband because she would lose everything, but his death would give her life insurance proceeds.
Flynn was sentenced to 40 years to life, with 15 years of the minimum suspended. A judge in 2008 reduced the minimum by three years. Flynn was described as a model prisoner, who earned his GED and certification as an electrician’s assistant while in prison. He married while in prison and has a teenage stepdaughter.
Randall, who entered the couple’s Derry condo with Flynn and held a knife to Smart’s throat as Flynn fired a bullet into the back of Smart’s head, also pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and was sentenced to 28 years to life. He also received sentence reductions. He told the parole board at his hearing April 9 that he would live with family after his release.
Smart, who admitted to the affair, but has continued to maintain she had nothing to do with her husband’s murder, was convicted of accomplice to first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit murder, and witness-tampering. She was sentenced to life without parole; efforts to have the sentence commuted have been unsuccessful. She is serving her sentence at the Bedford Hills (N.Y.) Correctional Facility for Women.
Joyce Maynard, whose book “To Die For” (and the movie made from it) was loosely based on Smart’s story, wrote last month to Gov. Maggie Hassan, saying much of the book was her imagination at work and she hoped it had not contributed to Pamela Smart’s conviction. She asked if Smart could be paroled, which is not possible under New Hampshire law regarding first-degree murder. Pam said of Smart: “The truth matters even more than does her freedom as she has demonstrated for 25 years. Pamela Smart will continue to assert her innocence until she is finally heard and believed.”