A murderer serving three life terms for killing three people saw two more decades added to his sentence after a Washington State parole board considering his request for early release felt his crimes called for a harsher punishment.
Timothy Pauley, 57, went before the Indeterminate Sentencing Review Board to convince them his behavior behind bars over the past 35 years should earn him an early release from prison, the Seattle Times reported.
The board—an arm of the state Department of Corrections—not only denied Pauley’s request, but added more than 20 years to his sentence for his “egregious” role in three 1980 murders at a SeaTac tavern.
“Mr. Pauley’s role in the murders was egregious,” the board said in a statement.
“He had the gun and was responsible for shooting the male victims to death despite the fact that they were already tied up in the cooler and posed no threat to Mr. Pauley or his co-defendant.”
Pauley was 21 when he and Scott Smith killed night manager Loran Dowell, bartender Robert Pierre and Pierre’s girlfriend Linda Burford during a robbery at the Barn Door Tavern on June 12, 1980.
Burford, a former waitress at the tavern, was raped and left hanging by her neck from a railing, while Dowell and Pierre were tied up in a walk-in cooler and shot in the head, officials said.
Two other women were choked with electrical cords and left for dead in the women’s restroom, but they survived.
Pauley has claimed that he thought he and Smith were only going to rob the tavern, but when he found out Smith had killed someone, Pauley said he panicked and fatally shot the two men, KING5 reported.
Pauley was convicted of three counts of first-degree murder and sentences for two of the counts are to run consecutively. Pauley entered prison in 1981 and— with time off his sentence for good behavior— finished his first murder term in 1999.
While in prison, Pauley has been a relatively trouble-free inmate, according to reports. He has regularly worked, attended school, mentored other inmates and participated in religious activities, according to testimony during a board hearing in January.
If the board had agreed to reduce his sentence, Pauley could have been freed as early as February 2018. His early release was opposed by relatives of the victims, as well as King County Prosecutor Dan Satterbeg and Congressman Dave Reichert, who investigated the murders as a detective with the Kings County sheriff’s office.
Pauley will not be eligible for parole until 2031.