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Parole Denied For Convict in ‘Career Girl Murders’

November 3, 1988 GMT

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) _ The man whose conviction for the 1963 ″Career Girl Murders″ led to the abandonment of New York state’s death penalty has been denied parole a third time, officials said Thursday.

Edward Elwin, executive director of the Division of Parole, said a three- member panel unanimously denied Richard Robles’ parole application Wednesday and Robles was informed a few hours later.

Robles can apply for parole again in November 1990.

Robles, 45, began serving a life sentence in 1965 for the murders of Janice Wylie, 21, and Emily Hoffert, 23, in their Manhattan apartment.

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Robles said he was in the process of turning around his life after years of of drug abuse and burglary and was committing ″one last burglary″ to get ″necessities″ for his family when he entered the women’s apartment, which he said he thought was vacant. But Miss Wylie was there, and he raped her at knifepoint, according to police.

He bound and robbed Miss Hoffert when she walked in, authorities said. Robles said he killed the women after Miss Hoffert vowed to remember him for police.

George Whitmore Jr., then 19, admitted to the killings in a confession that was later said to have been coerced by police. Whitmore was exonerated when Robles was arrested in January 1965.

The conduct of the police and the possibility that Whitmore could have been executed was a significant factor in the Legislature’s 1965 decision to do away with the death penalty for most killings. Subsequent court decisions invalided the rest of New York’s capital punishment statute.