A state parole board on Wednesday denied convicted murderer Richard Valenti’s 19th bid for parole.
Valenti, now 73, is serving two life sentences at Lee Correctional Institution in Bishopville. He was convicted of killing Sherri Clark, 14, and Alexis Ann Latimer, 13, in 1973. Their bodies were found in two shallow graves on Folly Beach more than 10 months after their disappearance.
Sherri Clark’s sister, Paula Clark Marion, presented a petition with 8,000 signatures to the parole board Wednesday, according to Pete O’Boyle, a spokesman for the Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services.
Valenti became eligible for parole in 1983. At the time of his sentencing, the law required that Valenti serve only 10 years in prison before being eligible for parole on the life sentences. He comes up for parole every two years and will be eligible for a hearing again July 18, 2018.
Valenti, a former sailor stationed at Charleston Naval Base, forced the teens under his house at gunpoint. He bound and gagged them and made them stand on chairs. He tied ropes around their necks, kicked the chairs away and watched the girls die.
He also was charged with strangling 16-year-old Mary Earline Bunch in 1974 and attacking five other women. Those charges were dropped after he got two life sentences.
Reach Melissa Boughton at 843-937-5594 or at Twitter.com/mboughtonPC.