Missouri officials toyed with inmates during parole hearings

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St. Louis County Justice Center

ST. LOUIS – A report says a Missouri parole board member and employee played a game during parole hearings in which they earned points for incorporating song titles and unusual words such as “manatee” and “hootenanny” into their questioning.

The Department of Corrections inspector general report says the officials awarded themselves extra points if the inmates said the words too. The Roderick and Solange MacArthur Justice Center at St. Louis released the report Thursday.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that it has prompted calls for Gov. Eric Greitens to remove member Don Ruzicka, who acknowledged coming up with the game.

Ruzicka doesn’t have a listed number. He told an investigator that the hearings were still “thorough.”

The corrections department didn’t immediately respond to phone or email messages from The Associated Press.

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