Convicted priest denied release from prison

Robinson, 76, suffered heart attack, asked to live out final days elsewhere

Gerald Robinson
Gerald Robinson

A federal court judge today denied a Toledo priest's plea to get out of prison to live out his final days.

U.S. District Court Judge James S. Gwin wrote in his order that the federal court did not have jurisdiction to grant Father Gerald Robinson’s motion for a compassionate release.

The Catholic priest, who is serving 15 years to life in prison for the 1980 murder of a nun, suffered a heart attack last month and has been told he has 30 to 60 days to live.

Judge Gwin said he could not allow Robinson to be released to his brother’s home in Toledo. He said state law allows Ohio’s governor to order that an inmate be released on compassionate grounds, although Robinson was not eligible under state law because it excludes those convicted of murder.

A previous plea to Gov. John Kasich was denied on that ground.

Robinson, 76, remains in a hospice unit at Franklin Medical Center, a Columbus hospital run by the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction.