Parole Board denies Robert Gonzales' release from prison

Nevada's parole board Friday denied Robert Gonzales' plea for release from prison.

Gonzales, 68, has served 21 years for murdering his estranged wife, Constance, outside a Carson City doctor's office in May 1985. He stabbed her repeatedly in front of the couple's teenage daughter until he was knocked unconscious by a worker in the building.

It was the first appearance for Gonzales, who was originally sentenced to life without possible parole by Carson District Judge Mike Fondi. The Pardons Board commuted that sentence to grant him the possibility of parole in November citing his long and exemplary record in the prison.

The board denied Gonzales saying it will not consider another request for parole for three years - the maximum allowable time.

Gonzales was in Truckee Meadows Hospital receiving psychiatric treatment when his wife served him with a restraining order and divorce papers. He checked himself out the following day, tracked her down and killed her.

Testimony during the trial indicated he had repeatedly abused the victim during their marriage.

During his parole hearing at Nevada State Prison 10 days ago, he was questioned by two board members about whether he has learned to control his violent streak. He cited the numerous classes he has taken, and said he is now able to deal with his emotions.

At the hearing, board member Connie Bisbee questioned whether he has truly reformed.

"I always think in cases like this there aren't any women and children to abuse here," she said of the prison. "You never addressed that. You have walking wounded all over."

Gonzales' record, including the testimony from his trial, contains a history of abuse, not only of the murder victim but others as well.

• Contact reporter Geoff Dornan at gdornan@nevadaappeal.com or 687-8750.

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