Consecutive vs. concurrent. It turned out to be a tragically big deal. Whether is was a clerical error or omission (or series of them), the end result is the same: three dead. Evan Ebel was incorrectly released four years early from a Colorado prison because the court order used “concurrent” rather than “consecutive” regarding his sentence for assaulting a prison guard.
Ebel is suspected of killing Colorado prison chief Tom Clements. Ebel was later killed in Texas after a gun battle with authorities. Most recently, a woman appeared in court on charges that she supplied the gun that Ebel used. Ballistics match bullets from the same gun to the killing of a pizza deliveryman, Nathan Leon. Authorities speculate that Ebel killed Leon for his uniform to disguise himself to approach Clements before fatally shooting him.
Indeed, words matter.