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Man serving life for water pistol robbery gets clemency nod

Rolf Kaestel, who has been in prison since 1981 for a robbing a taco shop with a water pistol, had his sentenced commuted by Gov. Hutchinson.
Credit: Arkansas Department of Corrections
Rolf Kaestel

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — An Arkansas man who's been serving a life sentence for robbing a taco shop in 1981 with a water pistol has moved closer to being eligible for parole. 

Gov. Asa Hutchinson on Thursday announced he intends to make Rolf Kaestel immediately eligible for parole. 

There’s a 30-day waiting period to receive public feedback before the governor’s decision becomes final.

70-year-old Kaestel was convicted of armed robbery and sentenced to life in prison after he robbed a Fort Smith taco shop of $264.  

Kaestel was armed only with a water pistol at the time. 

Kaestel's case had received attention nationally from activists.

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