President Donald Trump issued a full pardon Friday to Alice Marie Johnson, a woman who spent more than 20 years in prison on a non-violent drug offense.
Trump made the announcement in the Oval Office less than a day after Johnson delivered an emotional speech thanking Trump for his commutation of her sentence last year and commending his efforts on criminal justice reform. Johnson had been serving a life sentence for participating in the leadership of a multi-million dollar cocaine trafficking ring in the 1990’s.
“We’re giving Alice a full pardon. We are going to do it right now,” Trump told reporters. (RELATED: ‘It’s My Duty To Go’: Alice Marie Johnson To Commend Trump’s Criminal Justice Reform At RNC)
Alice Marie Johnson, the former prisoner whose sentence was commuted by President Trump, praises him for taking action on her case and signing criminal justice reform: “God bless President Trump” https://t.co/xM5Y49x2IL pic.twitter.com/8pGgxmdSf8
— CBS News (@CBSNews) August 28, 2020
“By the grace of God and the compassion of Donald John Trump, I stand before you tonight and I assure you, I am not a ghost. I am alive, I am well, and most importantly, I am free,” Johnson said Thursday night.
“My Christian faith and the prayers of so many kept hope alive,” she added. “When President Trump heard about me, the injustice of my story, he saw me as a person, he had compassion and he acted. Free in body, thanks to President Trump, but free in mind thanks to the almighty God.”
“Despite receiving a life sentence, Alice worked hard to rehabilitate herself in prison, and act as a mentor to her fellow inmates,” the White House said in a statement at the time. “Her Warden, Case Manager, and Vocational Training Instructor have all written letters in support of her clemency.”