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Alice Marie Johnson, the 63-year-old great-grandmother whose life sentence for a drug conviction was commuted by President Donald Trump, said Thursday that her release was a “miracle” and that she will use her new freedom to help other people like her.
“I want to take this chance to try to magnify what has happened with me, so that people will remember there are people just like me who are first-time nonviolent offenders who pose no safety risk to their communities,” Johnson told “Today” — a day after being released from prison.
“I can’t just walk away and forget about those those who have been left behind,” she said.
Johnson had been in federal lock up for more than 21 years after being found guilty in connection to a drug trafficking conspiracy, and she would likely have died behind bars without the president’s clemency. She was one of thousands of Americans serving life sentences for nonviolent offenses, according to a 2013 report by the American Civil Liberties Union, the vast majority of whom are there on drug crimes.