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Gov. Brown To Decide On Parole For 1976 Chowchilla Kidnapper

SACRAMENTO (AP) — California's governor will decide whether to allow parole for one of three men convicted in the kidnapping of 26 children and their school bus driver nearly 40 years ago.

The hostages were taken from Chowchilla in the Central Valley to a quarry near Livermore and held captive inside a buried, ventilated trailer stocked with mattresses, food and water. They eventually managed to dig their way out and escaped unhurt.

Gov. Jerry Brown has until midnight Thursday to decide after parole officials recommended in April that he grant parole to 63-year-old James Schoenfeld.

Schoenfeld, his brother, Richard, and friend Fred Woods were convicted of kidnapping the children who ranged in age from 5 to 14.

Richard Schoenfeld was paroled in 2012. Woods could have a parole hearing this fall.

If James Schoenfeld is released, he has said he would live with his mother and brother in Mountain View.

TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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