FAQ: Has Judy Apologized?

Yes. Judy takes full responsibility for her role in the deaths of Peter Paige, Edward O’Grady and Waverly Brown. She lives every day regretting her participation in this senseless action. You can see Judy speaking about her remorse here.

Prisoners are prohibited from direct communication with victims, but Judy wrote an open letter of apology for a Rockland newspaper that serves the county where the crime occurred. This letter followed Judy’s earlier apology, published in 1994.

In Judy’s own words:

While my life is fueled by a hope-filled commitment to repair, I never forget that the lives lost on October 20, 1981, cannot be brought back. I live each day with sorrow, shame, and regret for my role in the deaths of Peter Paige, Edward O’Grady and Waverly Brown.

What has become central to my life is being mindful of my connection with others and understanding others through empathy and respect. At the heart of these efforts is my awareness of the harm I caused.

I have wrestled privately and publicly with my responsibility for the three men who lost their lives on October 20, 1981, and I never forget that their families continue to suffer. In 1994, I wrote my first public letter disavowing my “political prisoner” position and expressed regret, guilt, and remorse for what I had done. In a 2002 letter of apology that was printed in the Rockland County Journal News, I acknowledged that the mindset that allowed me to participate in the crime came from having cut myself off from everyone outside our insular group and from having abandoned my own inner moral compass.

I look at the world differently now. Instead of abstract slogans, I see and am moved by flesh-and-blood people. I hope that my contrition, which was so publicly absent during the trial, and my long record of taking responsibility through sincere change and work on behalf of others, will bring some solace. I welcome any opportunity to participate in formal or informal victim-offender negotiation.

— Excerpts from Judy Clark’s letter to Governor Cuomo.