But some big states continue practice
More than 200,000 people still lose driving privileges every year for drug offenses unrelated to driving, according to a new analysis by The Clemency Report. Most driver’s license suspensions are for marijuana possession, although all drugs and offense types are covered.
The good news: The two-decade old federal policy seems to be falling out of favor. Click here for a map. Since 2008, seven states have dropped mandatory license suspensions for drug offenses (not related to driving), according to Federal Highway Administration records. Reasons: administrative cost, harm to highway safety and simple fairness. read more…
Our star of the day is a gentle woman, a mom who’s been in prison for meth since 1997. She will remain there for another decade — until she’s 59 — unless granted clemency.
Let’s call her Angel.
Angel recently tasted freedom. She took a two-day bus trip, by herself, from a federal prison in Waseca, Minn., to a federal prison in Dublin, Calif.
In a little known, wise and fiscally prudent practice, the Bureau of Prisons lets trusted prisoners travel unaccompanied via Greyhound bus from one prison to another. Angel, dressed in civilian garb, got a bus ticket, meal money and an arrival time.
Imagine being institutionalized for 17 years, then dropped off at a bus stop in front of Casey’s General Store in Minnesota to begin an unsupervised 2,000-mile road trip in a foreign land — the United States, circa 2014.
Angel, 49, tells a fascinating story of her two-day taste of freedom. read more…
Let’s send these people home
Weldon Angelos, 35, father, music entrepreneur, victim of “unjust, cruel and even irrational” 55-year sentenceNine years ago, Weldon Angelos, a 24-year-old rap music entrepreneur from Salt Lake City, was sentenced to 55 years in federal prison for three small-time marijuana sales. In a letter released today, 113 concerned citizens, including 60 former prosecutors, 17 former... read more
More news from The Clemency Report
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
The U.S. should release one million from prison.
Is it really that many -- one million?
The actual number is 1,606,535. Read why.
Why don't I hear about these people?
Prison silences. Imprisoned men and women are barely real to most free people. The Clemency Report aims to change that.
What can I do?
Tell the story of an affected loved one. Sign the petitions at change.org to show support for nonviolent drug offenders in prison.
Do you know someone whose story should be told?
Families Against Mandatory Minimums
Make the world a better place. Join the nation’s No. 1 sentencing advocacy group!
Most Popular Over Last Month
What We Do
The least we can do standard: The nation imprisons 2,280,400 people. In a prison system of historic proportions, the president and state governors should grant clemency each year to at least 1 of every 1,000 imprisoned people deserving of mercy.Our purpose is to restore clemency to its historical role as an everyday tool to improve justice, mercy, common sense and proportion to our imprisonment system.
The 10 Historical Uses of Clemency
1) To correct hard cases.
2) To correct unduly severe sentences.
3) For mitigating circumstances.
4) For innocence or dubious guilt.
5) In death penalty cases.
6) For physical condition.
7) To restore civil rights.
8) To prevent deportations.
9) For political purposes or reasons of state.
10) To mitigate harm to children.