Who is John Waterman (Rapist & killer who ripped off victim’s fingernails is getting out prison) Biography, Wiki
A convicted Sarasota rapist and murderer will be released from his sentence after a judge ruled he no longer poses a threat to the community, SNN-TV reported.
John Waterman, 54, was sentenced to 45 years in prison for raping and murdering a 36-year-old neighbor in the Hudson Bayou district of Sarasota in 1991 and raping a 31-year-old woman.
At the hearing Monday, Judge Fred Mercurio heard two psychologists say that Waterman would not be offended again. Because Waterman’s convictions occurred before Florida passed stricter laws, he became eligible for parole after serving 20 years, roughly 44.4% of his sentence.
Florida law today requires offenders not to be granted parole until they have served at least 85% of their sentences.
According to reports, Waterman was convicted before a law requiring prisoners to serve at least 85% of their time. He served only 44% of his initial sentence and was released after just 20 years in prison for good behavior.
Waterman was placed in a privately run treatment facility for sex offenders under the 1998 Jimmy Ryce Act, following a prison restriction. Jimmy Rye Act was named after a 9-year-old boy who was abducted, raped, killed. and it was torn apart by a farmer who was executed for crime in 2014. It requires the state to evaluate sex offenders before they are released from prison.
The 36-year-old murder victim was Waterman’s next-door neighbor, the Herald-Tribune reports. Authorities found her in a field with a cord around her neck and her fingernails ripped off. Another victim, a single mother, said she woke up to a man wearing a mask while holding a knife to her neck. The man, identified as Waterman, brutally raped her.
Investigators found the book “Postmortem” on Waterman’s bookshelf, which depicted a crime scene similar to how Waterman carried out the murder of his neighbor.
The crimes shocked Hudson Bayou residents, who were relieved when Waterman was convicted. However, most thought the rapist-killer would spend his life in prison, especially since his previous parole requests had been denied after doctors said he would likely re-offend.
When the previous doctors were replaced with a newly-assigned physician, Waterman’s status changed from “sexually violent predator” to someone who had been rehabilitated.
“People like that are dangerous and they are particularly dangerous to women and animals,” homeowner Rebecca Tharpe told the Herald-Tribune.
“I have a master’s degree in criminal justice, and I did part of my master’s program holding job fairs for convicted felons. The people I dealt with aren’t like (Waterman). These are people that can be rehabilitated…How can you rehabilitate someone that pulled someone’s fingernails off? How do you change them?”
Assistant State Attorney Ryan Felix said that Waterman completed “gain time” through good behavior and by working and taking classes in prison. He’s also been participating in mental health sessions.
Upon his release, Watermen is required to register as a sex offender and file his address with the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office.
Waterman currently plans to live at an Orlando-based mobile home community for released sex offenders, called Lake Shore Village. He’ll continue with outpatient treatment, according to Felix, and will live with two other male offenders.
With no travel monitoring, Waterman will be allowed to leave the community, but he will need to report his activity if he plans on spending additional time in another area.
Waterman is eligible for immediate release, according to News Channel 8.
Check back for updates.