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Free at Last!

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By Cheryl Brown

High among the best gifts ever received by Rose Parker was removal of the monitor that she wore first on her wrist, then her ankle, and back on her wrist again. Her gift came a day after Christmas.

Parker says all of the vestiges of her incarceration will be erased and she will be a free woman after serving 17 years for killing a boyfriend who held her hostage for four days with a gun at her head.

At that time there was no battered woman’s syndrome defense. Now there is and Parker plans to work toward full exoneration of her conviction.

Imagine having to be in by 7 p.m. (the 1st year) or even by 10 p.m. (the second year) every night or risk going back to jail.

For the past two years every time she went anywhere she had to start back home and build in enough time that if something happened to her car she would not miss her curfew.

The monitor was removed in enough time so that she could plan her 2nd Anniversary Celebration Dinner scheduled for February 15, at the UCR Commons.

Parker says the release from the monitor is a gift from God. Her parole officer had come to visit her on Tuesday, Christmas Eve so she was a little puzzled when he called her a day after Christmas for another visit.

"In my spirit I was getting a present from God," she told The Black Voice News. It meant that her ailing father could come to her house to spend the night, and for the first time he came and stayed with her.

She was elated for the opportunity. Before the monitor was cut off she said, "If something happened to my dad at my house I wouldn’t be able to help him.

Sure I could dial 911 but even then I couldn’t go with him to the hospital if necessary. To have my own dad in my house with me was wonderful."

Parker had to always be sure there was milk and other supplies in the house because she couldn’t go back to the store after curfew.

The first Christmas she was home two minutes late and they could have sent her back to prison but she was able to prove her tardiness was unavoidable. "The monitor made me feel like a dog," she said.

God has blessed her and during her 17 years of incarceration she never gave up faith that God would free her. "I expect to be fully exonerated," she said.

God has called her to a life of evangelism. She firmly believes the system is handling battered women all wrong. "God wants to save the family.

He has given me a vision of ‘Transformation Homes For Men’ instead of taking the mother and the children out of the home where the father is abusive, we need to take the men out and put them in a transformation home teaching them relaxation techniques instead of anger management, teaching both (husband and wife) how to communicate with each other.

When he arrives home feeling irritable they should be able to start doing the things that will relax him. If it means she needs to allow him to be alone then she would understand that through the sessions," said Parker.

Parker says with the current system the mother and children hide, the kids are isolated from their family and familiar surroundings. They become instantly poor and kids turn to hating their mother and before long they become abusers themselves.

Meanwhile life for Rose Parker moves forward. In 17 years she had no vacation and when Black Voice caught up with her she was on an airplane returning from northern California, where she also appeared in the local daily paper with her evangelistic work.

She is working on SOW, Inc as well as putting the finishing touches on the launch of Saving Our Women International, Inc. She plans to continue evangelism, motivational speaking and the charges that God has laid upon her. Maybe she can’t save the world but with God’s help she will try.

To attend the Anniversary Celebration please contact Phil Murray (909) 682-5010 or Kenny Simons (909) 787-4576.

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