Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb this week issued six pardons for ex-offenders.
The governor, with recommendations from a state board, considered 21 applications from ex-offenders looking for a pardon – which strikes felony charges from their record.
The six men chosen were convicted of crimes like theft, attempted fraud, and battery. But they have since become pastors, barbers and motivational speakers.
All six served their sentences more than ten years ago.
Holcomb spokesperson Stephanie Wilson says the criteria for receiving a pardon is rigorous.
“These people have to demonstrate not only that they’ve been crime-free for in some cases 30 or more years, but that they’ve dedicated their life, in some way, to improving their community,” Wilson says.
Wilson says there are no more pardon applications being considered at this time, but that Holcomb intends to consider more throughout the course of his administration.
Steven Pyatte was one of those chosen. He says in a Facebook post he was worried his application would get lost in the shuffle, after Gov. Mike Pence was elected Vice President.
"I was hoping and praying that the State of Indiana would see that I have changed and I would be forgiven for what I had done," Pyatte wrote. "Paying an attorney for an expungement of my felony record was totally different than being forgiven."
Pyatte was convicted in 1982 and 1985, for cases involving robbery and battery.