‘I’m going to fight him to keep him in prison,’ Family fears glitch will allow murderer to go free

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OKLAHOMA CITY - Oklahoma crime victims say they are not getting the alerts that allow them to know an offender is up for parole.

Recently, the state announced that a glitch in the system is to blame for the miscommunication.

Now, officials say everyone needs to re-register for those alerts.

Robert has files full of documents relating to the death of his uncle, Robert Holmes.

Holmes was a cab driver back in 1973 and was murdered by two men.

Those men were convicted of not only his murder, but the murder of two other Oklahoma City residents.

Now, Robert and the families of the other victims fear one of those men, Allen Justus, could get out on parole.

Robert said, "He was one vote from having that life sentence commuted."

4-years-ago, Robert's family says they didn't know Justus was up for a parole hearing until after the first hearing was complete.

Without testimony against the motion, Justus received approval for a second hearing, where he would appear before the board.

Robert said, "This man should never get round two. He's a serial killer. It's a slap in our face, in Oklahoma's face, in God's face."

Since then, Robert's family has relied on updates from the state through a system called VINE.

This time, they says they missed the alert again as a glitch in the system failed to notify them.

Instead, a lucky phone call told them about the hearing.

The glitch was first mentioned back in March.

Shortly after that, state officials encouraged anyone who has been a part of that system to re-register just to make sure they receive alerts.

For Robert and the other victims' families, those alerts are essential to their peace of mind.

He said, "I want Allen to know I'm going to fight him to keep him in prison."

Justus was initially sentenced to death but that was overturned back in the 1970s.

Robert and the other family members were able to get letters into the parole board in time for Justus' hearing this time around.

If you need to sign up for those VINE alerts, you can find out how by going to the website or by calling 1-(877)-ok4-VINE.

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