Gov. William Donald Schaefer has commuted the prison sentences of eight women convicted of retaliating against husbands or boyfriends who abused them.

The governor also agreed Tuesday to move up by one year the parole hearing for a ninth woman who was the victim of abuse.The nine women are serving sentences of three years to life in prison.

Five of the women whose sentences Schaefer commuted had been convicted of second-degree murder. The remaining women were convicted of first-degree murder, battery or voluntary manslaughter.

Schaefer visited the Maryland Correctional Institution for Women in Jessup last month at the request of Rep. Constance Morella, R-Md., and met with five women who represented a coalition of abuse victims.