Attorney Behind The 17 Inmates Freed From Life Sentences Clarifies Things
If you just read headlines, you might assume that Kim Kardashian did the work alone to free 17 people from life without parole sentences, but one of the REAL sisters at the forefront of the accomplishment is speaking up.
Brittany K. Barnett, an attorney and criminal justice reform advocate from Dallas, Texas left a lengthy Facebook post to people who’ve been misinformed about Kim Kardashian’s role in the release of 17 inmates.
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My soul sister. Together we pick locks to human cages. We have gracefully handed several life sentences back to the federal government…literally hundreds and hundreds of years. She hears my silent struggles and pours into my spirit in more ways than she will ever know. We are coming out of the shadows this year sis! No more shying away from our magic in all of its melanin glory. I will always have your back MiAngel Cody!! Breaking chains all 2019. @thedecarcerationcollective @buriedaliveproject
Barnett’s post speaks for itself, but the important message here is that she and her partner, MiAngel Cody (photo of them above) have BEEN doing the work. Kim latched on pretty late in the process but helped her find funding. Barnett also insists she’s happy to have Kimmy’s platform to spread the message.
Here is the entire message Barnett sent:
The first and last time I will speak on it. Seriously, because the negativity from today is misdemeanor shit and we still have lives to save. MiAngel Cody and I have BEEN doing this work for FREE. Ask any of our dozens of clients who are now free living their best lives. Both of us left six figure salary jobs and wiped out our own savings accounts to fund our work. We attempted to get grants from these large foundations shelling out MILLIONS of dollars to other organizations but would not look our way because they so-called don’t fund “direct services”. Our hands were full picking locks to human cages, we didn’t have time to participate in glorified begging from the nonprofit industrial complex only to be turned down.
Kim linked arms with us to support us when foundations turned us down. We and our clients and their families have a lot of love for her and are deeply grateful for her. Regardless of who helped fund us for the past three months, in 90 days TWO black women lawyers freed SEVENTEEN people from LIFE W/O PAROLE sentences – the second most severe penalty permitted by law in America. Only two of us. Prosecutors opposed nearly every single case we had. We litigated our asses off in federal courts across the country. We won DOWNWARD DEPARTURES in most of our cases – due to good lawyering. People set to DIE in prison – are now FREE. Our clients weren’t even on this selective list the Sentencing Commission sent out or on federal defenders radars. In fact we have copies of letters federal defenders sent some of our clients telling them they weren’t even eligible for relief under First Step Act – but we got them free. Our work in 90 days is historic. We picked some up from prison. We gave re-entry stipends. We continue to support them upon release.
Educate yourself on the real before coming to me with the bullshit. I may seem quiet but I promise I’m not the one. This criminal justice reform space is the messiest, pettiest, most divisive and cliquish shit I’ve ever seen in my entire life – with human lives at stake. The drama is mind blowing. I’ve never seen anything like what goes on in this space and I want no parts of the drama. This is why my sis and I stay in our corner and do the work – and why we will continue to do so. Both of us have had a parent in prison. This work is real to us.
We are ELATED 17 people will not die in prison. We are ELATED 17 families are restored. Instead of negativity why don’t y’all reach out and see if the 17 people we helped free need anything. Welcome them home. Give them jobs. Send a care package. Amplify their voices without the sharecropping.
Kim has always been very clear in her role. It’s the media that spins it around – not Kim. We do not care how the media is portraying it – that’s what the media does. Who cares. We need Kim’s support and the support of anyone else who wants to join this fight. We love that she is using her platform to raise awareness. We ain’t trying to be famous, we trying to get our people free. Period.
Kudos to Brittany Barnett and MiAngel Cody for doing this important work. Also shoutout to Kim for helping them get funding. So far, Barnett and Cody have helped save 37 lives from unfair sentences with The Buried Alive Project.
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Roderick, Timothy, & Jeffrey. These three men served 23 years, 22 years, and 22 years of their respective life sentences – and as of this week, we were victorious in dismantling ALL of their life sentences. It was a busy week for us and @thedecarcerationcollective as we near the end of our #90DaysOfFreedom campaign, working to break the chains of as many people serving life without parole sentences as we can. Follow along in our final days as we climb towards a millennia of time served. . #FirstStepAct #WomenWarriors #WomenLawyers #CriminalJusticeReform #BuriedAlive #BreakChains
Do YOU think Kim herself should’ve clarified this?