Another convicted murderer in the Tri-County has been given a pardon by ex-governor Matt Bevin.

On Monday, Bevin signed an executive order to commute the sentence of convicted murderer Delmar Partin. In 1994 a Knox County jury sentenced Partin to life in prison for the gruesome murder of Betty Carnes.

The executive order by Bevin was filed Monday on his last day serving as governor. The order states that "given the inability or unwillingness of the state to use existing DNA evidence to either affirm or disprove this conviction, I herby pardon Mr. Partin for this crime and encourage the state to make every effort to bring final justice for the victim and her family."

Bevin commuted the sentence from life to time served.

According to court documents, on Sunday, September 26, 1993, Betty Carnes disappeared from her job site at the Tremco plant in Barbourville. The next day her decapitated body was found inside a barrel in the plant laboratory.

Partin, now 63, was a laboratory technician at what was the Tremco Plant in Barbourville. Carnes was also a technician in the laboratory with Partin.

The autopsy disclosed the cause of death was a blunt-force injury to the head consistent with being struck by a metal pipe that was found in the barrel. Carnes also had bruises on her neck caused by a cord encircling her neck.

Bevin has pardoned four murder cases in Knox and Laurel Counties in the past two weeks.

Commonwealth Attorney Jackie Steele found out about Partin and two others late Wednesday night.

“This flurry of pardons that was done by ex governor Bevin was just a slap in the face to every victim across the state,” he told the Times Tribune Thursday morning. “He’s done it throughout the state. He’s released violent offenders and sex offenders into the community's that we’re going to live in.”

When asked how Bevin could make the pardon of Delmar Partin Steele said he had no idea and couldn’t justify half of what Bevin has done.

“It’s been a rough few days,” added Steele.

This is a developing story.

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