Tom Payne, the first black man to play on the University of Kentucky’s basketball team, must stay in prison another two years for rape before he can seek parole.
At a hearing Wednesday, two members of the Kentucky Parole Board deferred Payne’s request for parole for two years until December 2018, said board spokesman Mike Caudill.
Payne, who turned 66 on Nov. 19, will remain in custody at the Kentucky State Reformatory in LaGrange, Caudill said. Victim advocates have said Payne should not be released.
Caudill said Payne is serving a life sentence for raping a woman in 1977 and a five-year sentence for detaining a woman against her will in 1977.
Payne, a player at Shawnee High School in Louisville who graduated in 1969, was the first and only black to accept a basketball scholarship from legendary University of Kentucky coach Adolph Rupp. He went pro in 1971.
In 1972, Payne was first convicted of rape in Georgia. In 1977, he was sent to Kentucky to stand trial for a rape that had occurred in 1971. He was tried and convicted of rape and two counts of detaining a female (attempted rape) and received a life sentence.
Payne was paroled in 1983. Three years later, he was convicted of rape in California. He was paroled for that in June 2000 but was returned to Kentucky for his parole violation.