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Murderer Paroled by State

Jeffrey Allen Lane, who stabbed an 88 year old woman to death in 1990, is a free man.

The state Post-Release Supervision and Parole Commission approved Lane’s latest application for parole, according to a press release. He was approved for release on Jan. 14, 2021, and granted release Jan. 9 after having met all conditions for release.

Lane, who is now 52, was found guilty of first degree murder in Columbus County Superior Court on July 23, 1991. He had faced the death penalty for the murder of Janie McBride, 88, of the Grist community near Chadbourn. He was sentenced to life in prison.

McBride knew Lane his entire life, according to testimony. Lane did yard work for the victim. On July 10, 1990, court documents show McBride was found stabbed to death in her home. She was stabbed multiple times, witnesses and the autopsy report said, with two of the wounds being fatal.

When Lane was questioned by investigators, he initially denied any knowledge of the killing. He eventually said that he broke into McBride’s home with Terry Campbell so they could steal money for crack cocaine.

“The defendant said that when he and Campbell broke into the victim's house, she awoke and said, ‘Who is that?’ The defendant stated that Campbell rushed towards the victim and stabbed her several times. According to the defendant, Campbell then stole $40, and the two men fled from the home,” his initial appeal said.

Investigators convinced Lane to sign a confession describing his version of events – only to discover the next day that Campbell was in jail at the time of the killing.

The appeal notes that Lane was not read his rights at the first interview, but when he was brought in for a second discussion, he waived his rights and confessed to the stabbing.

Defense attorneys said Lane had been sexually abused as a child, which led to his eventual addiction to crack cocaine.

Lane’s attorneys originally claimed that he could not get a fair trial in Columbus County, since just a month prior to Lane’s court date, Michael T. Brown and Aquino Williams were tried for the ambush death of Sheriff’s Corporal Bob Hinson. Brown is being considered for parole under the same program that released Lane.

Lane and Brown were convicted before the state’s Structured Sentencing Law, which eliminates parole for crimes committed after 1994. As such, they were eligible under the Mutual Agreement Parole Program (MAPP) which is a three-way agreement between the parole commission and the inmate. The inmate must complete education and training programs, and be infraction free during the consideration period.

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