This is exactly the prospect Shawn faces currently – he knows he deserves a shot at parole: he has spent long enough protesting his innocence and is no longer that teenager caught up with the wrong crowd, but will a political system allow him a chance to make a difference to those around him as a productive member of society?
One of the most powerful forces is hope, oftentimes counterbalanced by despair. In the criminal justice system, nothing inspires more hope than the possibility of being granted and being released to parole supervision. On the other hand, nothing drops one so deeply into the depths of despair, having entertained that hope, than to be denied parole.
Having worked with the Coalition for Parole Restoration (CPR) since its inception, about 15 years, a nonprofit whose mission is to resuscitate the parole system in New York, to ensure fair, “nonpolitical” parole interviews for everyone serving an indeterminate sentence in prison, especially “long-termers,” and facilitating successful reentry.
Over the years I have met many remarkable people who have served and are serving long sentences in prison, mostly for murder which, when you don’t think about the television show Criminal Minds, is almost always a one-time crime, not to mention the fact that people…
View original post 428 more words