Reports: clemency denied for Shirley Skinner

By Gary Scott on April 18, 2015 at 6:21am

Clemency has reportedly been denied for an 80-year-old Ashland woman convicted of murdering her granddaughter’s estranged husband.

The Jacksonville Journal-Courier reports former Governor Pat Quinn denied Shirley Skinner’s request for clemency just before he left office on December 24th.

Skinner is serving a 55-year prison sentence for first degree muder. She was convicted in May 2010 for shooting Steven Watkins in the back of the head at Skinner’s residence during what was supposed to be a child custody exchange between Steven and Jennifer Watkins.

In October 2013, Skinner’s family requested the clemency because of Shirley Skinner’s reportedly poor health. Steven Watkins’ family urged the Illinois Prisoner Review Board in January 2014 not to have the clemency request approved.

Skinner in an exclusive jailhouse interview last year told our reporting partners at WICS ABC Newschannel 20 she did shoot Steven Watkins, but that she didn’t mean to do it.