A former Prince George’s County, Maryland, canine officer was among those who President Donald Trump pardoned Wednesday.
Stephanie Mohr was convicted in 2001 of a federal civil rights violation and sentenced to 10 years in prison after her police dog bit a person in 1995.
Trump granted her a full pardon Wednesday.
“Ms. Mohr was a police officer in Prince George’s County where she achieved the distinction of being the first female canine handler in the Department’s history. She served 10 years in prison for releasing her K-9 partner on a burglary suspect in 1995, resulting in a bite wound requiring ten stitches.
Officer Mohr was a highly commended member of the police force prior to her prosecution. Today’s action recognizes that service and the lengthy term that Ms. Mohr served in prison,” The White House said in a statement.
Mohr told WTOP she had been pursuing presidential pardon for much of 2020 and was “overwhelmed” when she got the call Wednesday night.
“I was not expecting it … I was feeling a little down and a little less than hopeful, and it was such a wonderful, wonderful surprise,” she said.
Mohr said she’s looking forward to spending quality time with her family for the holidays and going to work as a construction standards inspector for St. Mary’s County government.
“I’m just going to go to work every day, come home, enjoy my family and live my life in the best possible way I can,” she said.
Mohr said she’s had a lot of time to reflect over the events that led to her conviction and has “peace in my heart that I did the right thing.”
“There’s really not much I would have done differently, even if I could. I did my job and acted appropriately,” she said, adding that she was a victim of “an agenda of the times and I was made a scapegoat.”
Mohr has a message for those who feel her pardon is undeserved.
“I would just hope that people would have an open mind and the ability to see the other side and possibly realize that not everything the Department of Justice does is legitimate, or by the book or above board,” she said.
Mohr said in a statement through the Law Enforcement Legal Defense Fund that without the support of the LELDF and its donors and supporters, “I honestly don’t think this pardon would have happened.”
The Fraternal Order of Police also supported her clemency.
“This has been a long, hard slog for Stephanie Mohr, who served her complete sentence of 10 years — one year for each of the 10 stitches it took to heal the wounds on an escaping burglar’s leg,” said LELDF President Jason C. Johnson.
Mohr said she is grateful for the closure of “a 25-yearlong saga for me and my family.”
“I have not spoken to the president but if I could, I would say ‘thank you’ … those words really aren’t big enough.”