In 2012, the US Supreme Court ruled that it was unconstitutional to give a life sentence without the possibility of parole to a juvenile, but each state has its own laws. Tennessee has some of the strictest juvenile justice laws in the nation, evident today in the case Cyntoia Brown, a 30 year old sex trafficking victim who is in the fifteenth year of a 51 year sentence before chance of parole. Senator Brenda Gilmore, Minister Misha Maynard, COO Cathedral of Praise Church, Francie Hunt, Executive Director of TN Advocates for PP, and artist and BriteHeart Creative Director, Kate Tucker gathered this morning at the Capital to urge Governor Haslam to grant clemency to Cyntoia Brown.

Governor Haslam leaves office January 19. You can raise your voice by going to the Nashville Metro Council Meeting tonight 1/3 at 6:30pm at 1 Public Sq, Nashville, TN 37201 David Scobey Council Chamber where the Council will be voting on a resolution to request that Governor Haslam grant clemency to Cyntoia Brown. Ask your representative to support Resolution RS2019-1544 Referred to the Rules, Confirmations, and Public Elections Committee – A resolution requesting that Governor Bill Haslam grant clemency to Cyntoia Brown. Sponsor: Jacobia Dowell

Call and email the Metro Council 

Council Member info 

Speak out online with ACLU

Need more back story? Check out Undisclosed – Cyntoia Brown 51 to Life and watch the documentary Me Facing Life on PBS.

From Senator Elect Brenda Gilmore:

A CALL is being issued to all women and men to lend their voices and speak out for Cyntoia Brown. In the interest of justice, Cyntoia Brown should be set free immediately. 

Cyntoia was a 16-year-old child, homeless, trapped in prostitution, and was a victim of child sex trafficking. In August 2004, Cyntoia found herself in bed with an adult man, and, believing her life was in danger, she shot and killed him. After a trial, she was sentenced to life in prison. 

Cyntoia’s continuing imprisonment is unfair and unjust under the circumstances of her unique situation.

Over the past decade, Cyntoia has taken substantial steps to better herself, including earning an associate’s degree, serving as a role model to her fellow inmates, and regaining the confidence and self-empowerment that adults deprived from her, by forcing her into prostitution as a child. 

Cyntoia has already served almost 15 years in prison. To keep Cyntoia in prison for 51 years is another travesty to a young victim of sexual exploitation. It is the right thing to do for this young woman. Will you help? Will you join the fight to free Cyntoia Brown by coming to the Press Conference and by lending your name to a list of supporters for Cyntoia Brown?

Want to make a difference in criminal justice reform? Volunteer with Gideon’s Army or Project Return.

#getcivic #engageconnectempower