A convicted Ottawa murderer with eight years left on his sentence has asked to be paroled early.
Dana G. Brown, now 54, appeared Wednesday in La Salle County Circuit Court on a motion to reduce sentence. He left with an Aug. 9 court date before Judge Cynthia M. Raccuglia, who agreed to give him time to respond to the state’s motion to dismiss.
“I’m going to hear your arguments and then I’ll decide what we’ll do next,” Raccuglia said.
In his handwritten motion, Brown said the Legislature enacted police and court reforms that included formation of a task force to study “innovative ways to reduce prison population.” This, he argued, opens the door for early release.
Brown further said he’s eligible and worthy for having already served 24 years, accumulated no violent prison infractions and because he is in “low health,” citing a list of medical issues including diabetes.
Prosecutors replied Brown had no procedural grounds for seeking relief and, “The state is of the opinion that the defendant is not entitled to any relief in this matter.”
Brown was developed as a murder suspect in 1998 after workers found the body of Justin Poulaki, 21, in a Mendota-area field. Investigators found Brown and an accomplice robbed Poulaki for drug money and left him bound and beaten in the field.
The following year, Brown pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and was sentenced to 35 years in prison, later reduced to 32 years due to a technicality.
He is currently scheduled for parole on March 9, 2030.