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LIVE: Panola Co. DA recommends that Bernie Tiede be released on time served

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Bernie Tiede enters the courtoom on Tuesday (Source: KLTV Staff) Bernie Tiede enters the courtoom on Tuesday (Source: KLTV Staff)
PANOLA COUNTY, TX (KLTV) -

A Panola County court heard a recommendation from both Panola County District Attorney Danny Buck Davidson and forensic psychiatrist Dr. Edward Gripon on Tuesday that Bernie Tiede should be released from prison on time served.

Dr. Gripon told the court that he believes Tiede experienced a dissociative episode when the offense against Marjorie Nugent was committed. He said he believes the incident was not premeditated.

Davidson said based on new evidence he believes abuse and other factors led Tiede to kill Nugent. He told the court he no longer believes a life sentence is appropriate.

Davidson said new psychological findings and evidence of abuse are credible evidence and that something needs to be done. He added that given the new evidence, Tiede’s sentence should be softened to a maximum of 20 years. If Tiede would have been sentenced to 20 years in the original case in 1999, he would have already been released on parole.

The district attorney said Tiede is a convicted felon who has served 17 years in prison and should be released on time served.

A bond hearing for Tiede is also set to take place on Tuesday.

If released, Gripon told the court he believes Tiede is not a danger to society and that the incident with Nugent was a unique event.

On Tuesday morning, Texas Tribune reported that Tiede could be released on Tuesday afternoon. The two conditions of his release would be that he live with Richard Linklater, his moviemaking benefactor and receive counseling for sexual abuse.

Tiede admitted to killing his friend and Carthage millionaire Marjorie Nugent in 1996. He was convicted of Nugent’s death in 1999 and sentenced to life in prison. Under that sentencing, he would not be eligible for parole until 2027.

Tiede rose to fame after his story was portrayed in the 2011 film, "Bernie," starring Jack Black.

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