Gov. John Kasich: Pardon Kelley Williams-Bolar -- she shouldn't go to jail for protecting her kids
  • Petitioned Rob Nichols

This petition was delivered to:

Communications, Gov. Kasich
Rob Nichols
Ohio
Gov. John Kasich
Ohio
Gov. John Kasich

Gov. John Kasich: Pardon Kelley Williams-Bolar -- she shouldn't go to jail for protecting her kids

    1. Petition by

      C. Lord

      Western Mass, MA

  1.  
  2.   
September 2011

Victory

Caitlin Lord starts a petition in support of a mother Kelly Williams-Bolar arrested for sending her kid to a school in the wrong district. 185,000 people join the campaign, and allies organize a petition delivery and call-in day to the Ohio Governor's office. The Ohio Governor grants clemency to Williams-Bolar, who publicly thanks all petition signers.

"An Ohio mother of two was sentenced to 10 days in jail and placed on three years probation after sending her kids to a school district in which they did not live. Kelley Williams-Bolar was sentenced by Judge Patricia Cosgrove on Tuesday and will begin serving her sentence immediately. The jury deliberated for seven hours and the courtroom was packed as the sentence was handed down. She was convicted on two counts of tampering with court records after registering her two girls as living with Williams Bolar's father when they actually lived with her. The family lived in the housing projects in Akron, Ohio, and the father’s address was in nearby Copley Township. Additionally, Williams-Bolar’s father, Edward L. Williams, was charged with a fourth-degree felony of grand theft, in which he and his daughter are charged with defrauding the school system for two years of educational services for their girls. The court determined that sending their children to the wrong school was worth $30,500 in tuition. - Dr. Boyce Watkins                    

As punishment for doing everything in her power to keep her children safe, Ms. Williams-Bolar, a single mother with no previous criminal record, has been made a felon by Ohio judge Patricia Cosgrove. In addition to jail time, a large fine and probation, Ms. Williams-Bolar's felony conviction has also robbed her of her future.

"'Because of the felony conviction, you will not be allowed to get your teaching degree under Ohio law as it stands today. The court's taking into consideration that is also a punishment that you will have to serve.'' - Judge Patricia Cosgrove

Although Ms. Williams-Bolar had nearly completed her education to become a teacher, under Ohio law felons are not permitted to teach. She has been robbed of the opportunity to elevate her life and the lives of her family through her own hard work. She has been handed what equates to a life sentence for attempting to protect her children. In a time of overwhelming economic disadvantage for so many US citizens, are loving single mothers like Williams-Bolar truly the enemy our court system should be making examples of in this way? 

Ms. Williams-Bolar's attorneys are currently preparing for an appeal. Please sign this petition to let Gov. Kasich know that you do not feel that Kelley Williams-Bolar's punishment appropriately fits her crime, and that you both support and demand a full pardon.

 

Recent signatures

    News

    1. How 60 Seconds Of Your Day Today Could Help Kelley Williams-Bolar

      Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Earlier this year, Kelley Williams-Bolar spent 9 days in jail because she sent her kids to a safer school district. Now, her future is in the hands of Ohio Governor John Kasich.
      More than 180,000 Change.org members have signed a petition asking...

    2. Victory! Kelley Williams-Bolar Granted Clemency By Ohio Gov. John Kasich

      C. Lord
      by C. Lord
      Petition Organizer

      Victory! Gov. John Kasich today reduced the charges against Kelley Williams-Bolar, a single African-American mother jailed and convicted of a felony earlier this year for enrolling her children in a school district in which she did not live.
      The...

    3. VICTORY!

      Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      VICTORY! Today Gov. John Kasich agreed to lessen Kelley Williams-Bolar's charges. Read more in the AP story:

    4. How 60 Seconds Of Your Day Today Could Help Kelley Williams-Bolar

      Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Kelley Williams-Bolar spent 9 days in jail because she sent her kids to a safer school district. Now, her future is in the hands of Ohio Governor John Kasich. Can you stand up for Kelley and call the Governor today? Click above for the #!

    5. Parole Board rejects pardon for Kelley

      Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Earlier today, the Ohio Parole Board rejected Kelley Williams-Bolar's request for a pardon. But it's up to John Kasich to decide whether or not he takes their recommendation. Sign the petition to tell him to have sympathy for this single mother!

    6. Reached 150,000 signatures
    7. Parole Board will make a recommendation within 60 days

      Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      The Parole Board will make a recommendation on Kelley Williams-Bolar's sentence within 60 days, say media reports. Please continue to sign and urge Gov. Kasich to pardon this mom trying to send her children to a safer school.

    8. Will Ohio's Governor Pardon Kelley Williams-Bolar?

      Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      After Kelley Williams-Bolar's clemency hearing yesterday, Ohio Gov. Kasich's spokesman said, "The governor is happy the board is looking into it." Good news for the Ohio mom?

    9. Kelley Williams-Bolar Tears Up At Hearing

      Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Kelley Williams-Bolar teared up in her hearing today, say media reports. Read more in the Columbus Dispatch:

    10. Press: Multimedia will dominate Kelley Williams-Bolar clemency hearing

      Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Newsnet5.com has the latest on Kelley Williams-Bolar's clemency hearing scheduled for today in Columbus, Ohio.

    11. Kelley Williams-Bolar's hearing is tomorrow

      Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Patch.com covers Kelley Williams-Bolar's hearing, which will happen tomorrow at 9 a.m. in Columbus, Ohio.

    12. Reached 100,000 signatures
    13. Kelley's Parole Board Hearing is Wednesday

      Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Kelley Williams-Bolar's clemency hearing will happen on Wednesday at 9 a.m. Rev. Jesse Jackson, among others, will testify on her behalf.

    14. Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Kelley and her attorney will be meeting with the Parole Board next week - we'll keep you updated.

    15. Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Months after this campaign started on , members keep signing and commenting - here's a great comment from Mikki Davis: "I am so sorry for the trouble you are being put through. I would have done the same thing, you did what you had to do to take care of yours. I respect and commend your decision. God Bless and Good Luck!!"

    16. Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      We'll be updating you as soon as we find out when the Parole Board is likely to make their recommendation.

    17. Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Austin, Texas columnist draws comparisons between Kelley Williams-Bolar and the DREAM Act activists:

    18. Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Great column, originally from , on Kelley Williams-Bolar's situation within an education context:

    19. Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Join this Facebook fan page for Kelley Williams-Bolar:

    20. Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Kelley Williams-Bolar on Dr. Phil: check out the YouTube clip.

    21. Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      I heard back this week from Gov. Kasich's spokesman that a recommendation from the Ohio Parole Board on Kelley Williams-Bolar's case may come within the next month.

    22. Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Ohio Gov. Kasich held up Kelley Williams-Bolar's story in last night's State of the State address, saying: ‘‘We went to bat for this lady in Akron — charging her with a felony because she’s trying to protect her kids and not have kids wandering the streets and have kids that are protected. I’ve sent it to the parole board.’’

    23. Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      The Rev. Al Sharpton continues to fight for this mom, saying in an interview on Monday that she should not have been jailed:

    24. Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      'Mom jailed for sending kids to better school' gets the Taiwanese video treatment:

    25. Carol Scott
      Petition Organizer

      Kelley Williams-Bolar will be on Dr. Phil today:

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Dan Knoll SAINT LOUIS, MO
      • almost 3 years ago

      And the point I forgot, perhaps the main one, is why are we punishing a financially struggling parent,and yes, African-American as well, as the selected 'example', to make an example out of? (yup,ended that with a preposition..) Why was she chosen, and not the thousands of other well-off parents and relatives who are guilty of playing the same bs "district game".Why choose her, of this worng act-parents being dishonest about their all-important zip code/school district., Yes, it was wrong, but criminal? Parents doing the wrong thing out of their children's concern, in a broken, deeply flawed classist system, and trying to do the best for a child without a choice.? It all seems so against out founding principles as a county. (just my 2cents...)

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Dan Knoll SAINT LOUIS, MO
      • almost 3 years ago

      I know this activity occurs, and it occurs most often in wealthy, privileged zip codes, where the public school system punishes children whose parents are poor. A system that doesn't address the cruel and un-American inequalities of the funding of public schools, and is a shame of our wealthy country built upon ideas of possiblities, social concern, and "give us your poor,yearning to be free..".

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Mohammed /// CASABLANCA, MOROCCO
      • almost 3 years ago

      .. I know it is the child who chooses which institution he likes .. parents should listen to their children in all cases ..

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Deborah Latham-White COLUMBUS, OH
      • almost 3 years ago

      I am an Ohioan. The real crime is the fact that the school in Ms. Williams-Bolar district was not up to par. As a mother, I can understand why she sent her children to another district school. Even you have stated that her actions are understandable. What I cannot support is taking away her future because of what she did. I have sat and listened to you talk about the support that the women of this state deserve. I do not believe that Kelly Williams-Bolar should be excluded from that effort. I am a teacher and I know how much work goes into earning a degree in the field and what a true life changing experience it will be for her and her family once she has completed her degree work. I cannot see the sense in removing her from her family or ruining her future over this situation.

      It is time to put your words into action and grant fully clemency in this case.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Mohammed /// CASABLANCA, MOROCCO
      • almost 3 years ago

      I am with you and against others who have no roots and have a misconduct ..

      help me and sign my petition

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

    Develop your own tools to win.

    Use the Change.org API to develop your own organizing tools. Find out how to get started.