LOUISVILLE (WHAS11) -- More than 200 people across Kentucky could breathe a sigh of relief after former Kentucky Governor, Steve Beshear, granted 197 pardons and six commutations.
The former two-term governor announced his final executive action on Thursday, Dec. 7, his last official day in office.
One Louisville family is "outraged" to hear about Beshear's final political move, after the man who shot their 12-year-old son was one of those individuals who was pardoned.
Michael Ray Bishop shot 12-year-old Jacob Eberle in June of 2011; Eberle survived but suffered several wounds. That night Bishop recalled hearing a commotion outside, saying the neighborhood "had been having a lot of trouble with door bells being rung and flower pots thrown over."
Police said Eberle and a group of friends had been playing ‘ding-dong ditch,' but Eberle denied doing so the night he was shot. Bishop was originally charged with attempted murder, but his attorney's settled on a federal charge of assault. He served a total of 100 days in jail.
In a statement sent to WHAS 11, the Eberle's attorney, Bart McMahon, issued the following on behalf of the family:
"The family of Jacob Eberle is outraged that Governor Beashear pardoned Michael Bishop. In June of 2011, Michael Bishop fired a shotgun at several boys, who did not enter his yard or ring his doorbell.
After shooting Jacob in the back, and seeing Jacob fall to the ground, Mr. Bishop destroyed evidence, showered and then lied to the police while Jacob fought for his life. Governor Beshear recklessly granted a pardon without consulting the Eberle family, reviewing the facts, or notifying the victim.
Pardons should reward those who redeem themselves after conviction with good deeds or to correct grave miscarriages of justice. Neither situation applies to Mr. Bishop. Mr. Bishop received red carpet treatment after his crime from the judicial and executive branches, from the exparte order lowering his bond from $50,000 to $10,000, to shock probation, and now the pardon. The Eberle family questions the motives and reasons for the pardon in light of the true facts. Unfortunately, Governor Beshear's pardon cannot be challenged or reviewed as he betrayed all crime victims."
One of Bishop's attorney's, Alex Dathorne, sat down with WHAS 11 and discussed what the pardon meant for his client.
"The pardon is something that allows my client to continue with his life, putting this matter completely behind him," Dathorne said.
He added, "I don't believe this is a matter anybody takes lightly, especially in this situation where we unfortunately were dealing with some injuries to a very nice, polite young child."