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Man convicted in 2001 fatal stabbings of Dartmouth College professors released from prison

James Parker was 16 at the time of his conviction
The U.S. Supreme Court is seen, Thursday, April 25, 2024, in Washington. (AP Photo/Mariam Zuhaib)

A man convicted for his role in the stabbing deaths of two Dartmouth College professors has been released from prison.

James Parker was 16 at the time of his conviction stemming from the 2001 deaths of Half and Susanne Zantop in Hanover, New Hampshire. He was granted parole in April.

Parker’s attorney, Cathy Green, said Friday that Parker has been released with a condition of a “no contact” order with the Zantop family. Parker pleaded guilty years ago to being an accomplice to second-degree murder and served a little less than the minimum of his sentence of 25 years to life.

Parker said during a parole hearing earlier this year that what he did was “unimaginably horrible” and there is “not an amount of time or things that I can do to change it, or alleviate any pain that I’ve caused.”

More than two decades ago, Parker and Robert Tulloch, then 17, wanted to move to Australia and devised a scheme to rob the Zantops of their credit cards and ATM information and kill them. Parker and Tulloch fatally stabbed the Zantops and fled with $340 and a list of numbers. They were arrested at an Indiana truck stop weeks later.

Tulloch pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and received a mandatory sentence of life without parole, but was later slated for resentencing. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled it unconstitutional to sentence juvenile offenders to mandatory life imprisonment without parole.

Susanne Zantop, 55, and Half Zantop, 62, were German-born academics. Susanne was head of Dartmouth’s German studies department and Half taught Earth sciences.

Veronika Zantop, one of the Zantops’ two daughters, said in an email to The Associated Press in April that she misses her parents and is “deeply sad for everything they - and we - have missed out on.” She also said she wishes Parker “and his family the best and hope that they can heal.”

The Associated Press