Mission Inexperienced, an initiative of justice reform advocacy group the Weldon Challenge, introduced on Thursday that it has filed a clemency petition for Parker Coleman, who’s serving a 60-year sentence in federal jail for marijuana distribution. The submitting continues Mission Inexperienced’s marketing campaign to safe the discharge of women and men serving time for marijuana offenses and follows President Joseph Biden’s current announcement that he would pardon all federal convictions for easy marijuana possession.
The clemency submitting is a part of the efforts of Mission Inexperienced, an initiative of the Weldon Challenge working to free hashish inmates from jail. The Weldon Challenge is headed by Weldon Angelos, who spent 13 years of a 55-year sentence in federal jail for a nonviolent marijuana conviction after a various group of lawmakers, authorized students, athletes, and entertainers campaigned for his freedom.
“Since my launch from jail, I’ve devoted my life to securing the discharge of different people locked away for non-violent drug offenses,” Angelos mentioned in an announcement. “Parker Coleman’s case is an ideal instance. He shouldn’t spend one other day in jail for conduct that isn’t even criminalized anymore in a lot of the nation. Sufficient is sufficient.”
Mission Inexperienced is working with the Academy for Justice to submit clemency petitions urging Biden to ship on the pledge he made whereas campaigning for workplace to launch these convicted of nonviolent marijuana offenses. The submission for Coleman is a part of a brand new marketing campaign, the Hashish Clemency Initiative, that seeks to assist individuals in jail for marijuana convictions, beginning with these incarcerated in federal jail. The brand new initiative fosters collaboration between felony justice students and reform advocates to attain its bold objectives.
Authorized Scholar Drafts Clemency Petition
Coleman’s clemency petition was drafted by Erik Luna, the Amelia D. Lewis Professor of Constitutional & Prison Legislation and the Founding father of the Academy for Justice, a felony justice reform program inside the Sandra Day O’Connor Faculty of Legislation at Arizona State College. Within the petition, Luna wrote that commuting Coleman’s sentence could be a “highly effective, tangible step in affirming the President’s dedication to ending federal incarceration for non-violent marijuana offenses.”
“Parker Coleman, a younger African-American man, is at present serving a 60-year federal jail sentence for non-violent marijuana distribution—that’s, de facto life imprisonment of an individual of shade for conduct now licensed below state legal guidelines throughout the nation and overtly pursued as a enterprise by the multi-billion greenback hashish trade,” Luna wrote. “Mr. Coleman’s sentence shouldn’t be solely a troubling instance of racial and sophistication disparities in federal drug enforcement, it’s extreme in comparison with the phrases imposed in associated instances or that will be imposed in state courtroom at this time.”
In 2014, Coleman was sentenced to 30 years in federal jail on marijuana trafficking and cash laundering prices plus an extra 30 consecutive years for a nonviolent firearms offense. The clemency petition argues that the sentence is extreme in an period of widespread hashish coverage reform, noting that Coleman has taken steps to rehabilitate himself and enhance his life whereas behind bars.
“His efficient life sentence can also be inconsistent with current reforms in legislation and coverage, in addition to a sea change in public opinion, all of which level away from incarcerating individuals like Mr. Coleman for non-violent drug offenses and towards a non-punitive strategy to marijuana,” the petition reads. “Regardless of the injustice of his sentence, Mr. Coleman has labored onerous on rehabilitation and self-improvement. His profitable file whereas incarcerated, together with a powerful help community of household and pals, make Mr. Coleman a perfect candidate for clemency reduction from an extreme and unjust sentence.”
Luna applauded President Biden’s current pardon of federal offenses for easy marijuana possession as “a historic occasion in felony justice reform and an necessary first step towards correcting the lingering injustices of a nationwide drug ban.” However he added that “further work stays to be achieved, particularly the discharge of these incarcerated for non-violent marijuana-related offenses on the federal stage—together with Parker Coleman.”
By granting clemency on this case, Luna mentioned, “the President would additional exhibit his dedication to correcting injustices and his perception that America really is the land of second probabilities.”
Clemency Petition Backed By Glass Home Manufacturers
The clemency petition is backed by California vertically built-in hashish firm Glass Home Manufacturers and the corporate’s chairman and CEO, Kyle Kazan, who has been working to safe Coleman’s launch for greater than a 12 months. Kazan, who can also be a former police officer and a Mission Inexperienced board member, is personally supporting Coleman’s clemency bid by guaranteeing mentorship, significant employment, and housing upon his launch.
In a public assertion, Kazan mentioned that “whereas Glass Home has had revenues properly in extra of $100 million for cultivation, transportation and gross sales of marijuana whereas no person within the firm has served a day in jail for it, the juxtaposition between the authorized enterprise and prisoners like Parker Coleman is jarring.”
“It’s a ethical crucial for me to dedicate my time and sources to redress the absurd incongruities present at this time on the twilight of marijuana prohibition,” he added.
Glass Home President Graham Farrar says that “Parker is a hashish POW.”
“It’s loopy that he’s locked in a cage for a 60-year sentence for a non-violent hashish cost,” Farrar wrote in an e mail to Excessive Instances.
“The work that Weldon Angelos and Erik Luna are doing is wonderful. I’m proud that Glass Home and Kyle are part of it,” he added. “As a former police officer, Kyle’s voice is a crucial one within the battle for hashish clemency for Parker in addition to the two,700 different federal non-violent Hashish POWs at present in jail over a plant. It’s time to finish the conflict on hashish and let our fellow Individuals go free.”
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