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Black Women Legal Powerhouses MiAngel Cody and Brittany Barnett and Humanitarian Trae Tha Truth Launch
#weFREEus on Juneteenth 2020

U.S. Representative Karen Bass

Trae hosts Juneteenth Peace Ride for Justice to Commemorate #weFREEus  and Celebrate Release of Kevin Fenner and Bervick McClendon

HOUSTON, TX, JUNE 19, 2020 - MiAngel Cody and Brittany Barnett a formidable team of Black Women attorneys who fight to save people sentenced to life in prison for drugs and to end the unfair laws that put them there have partnered with humanitarian and rapper, Trae Tha Truth to launch the #weFREEus movement on Juneteenth, 2020, and to celebrate the early release of Kevin Fenner and Bervick McClendon. Trae hosted a Juneteenth Peace Ride for Justice, Friday, June 19th in Houston, TX to acknowledge all lives lost, and victims of excessive sentencing, force, due to police brutality.

The highly lauded legal experts are most known for representing people sentenced to life in federal prison for drug charges. According to counselors Cody and Barnett, “We fight to free people who are destined to die in prison under America’s unfair drug laws. We are not reformists. There is no criminal justice to reform in America because criminal justice has never really actually existed in this country. We work to dismantle injustice and free our people... and we never fold.”

To date, the Black lawyer locksmiths have saved over 51 men and women sentenced to die in prison. Their clients have survived 1,000+ years of combined human caging resulting from unfair drug laws in the United States. Most recently, in tandem with the popular artist/activist Trae Tha Truth, Cody and Barnett were successful in achieving the reduction of a life imprisonment sentence for Minneapolis, MN native Kevin Fenner Sr.

A report by Fox26 Houston shares the moment Kevin Fenner Sr., a 52-year-old, who has been in prison for 13 years, finds out from Trae Tha Truth that he will soon, once again live outside prison walls.

 


"I just personally wanted to tell you that we fought for your case and the federal judge just reduced your sentence. So you’ll be coming home” Trae tells Fenner. "No, man. No, man. Are you serious man?” Fenner cries.

"Yes, you will be coming home,” Trae answers and Fenner sobs "I can’t believe, oh man”. He can barely get any words out through his sobs.

"Just because you've committed an offense doesn’t mean you need to be thrown away forever and taken away from your family forever,” says Attorney MiAngel Cody. The last thing Fenner says on the recording. "I can breathe man. I can finally breathe man".

Now after the death of George Floyd, which has opened eyes around the world to inequality, a judge has agreed to set Fenner free. Fenner was sentenced to life in prison in 2007 under the 3-strikes law for possessing a golfball size amount of crack cocaine.

“He could have sold a suitcase full of cocaine powder and still not received a life sentence. That’s the disparity,” explains MiAngel Cody who along with Brittany Barnett, works for free and has worked with Kim Kardashian West using the 2010 Fair Sentencing Act signed by President Obama to decarcerate mostly black men. 

Attorneys Cody and Barnett and Trae Tha Truth also celebrate another win with the reduced sentence of a 59 year old West Palm Beach, Florida man, Bervick McClendon. The news came on the eve of Juneteenth, a holiday celebrated on June 19th to commemorate the emancipation of enslaved people in the United States. 

Thanks to the diligence and expertise of the Buried Alive Project, United States District Judge Donald M Middlebrooks, ruled on the case of McClendon; reducing his life sentence, calling for immediate release. According to Judge Middlebrooks, “Prisons cannot be just places of punishment; they must also create opportunities for rehabilitation and redemption. Despite the hopelessness of a life sentence, Mr. McClendon has overcome addiction, furthered his education, and sought to control his anger. When I sentenced Mr. McClendon in 2005, I underestimated his potential and capacity for change.”

Middlebrooks continues, “Redemption means atoning for a fault or mistake, making something better. Mr. McClendon says he “give(s) thanks to the criminal justice system for helping me to become that person I am today.” I am grateful that the First Step Act allows me to correct and unjust sentences.”

Trae Tha Truth and Attorney Barnett had the honor of informing McClendon that he was to be freed, and coming home on Thursday, June 18, 2020. The inspiring video can be seen on the Trae The Truth Instagram account. 

 

In the wake of the more attention being paid to the social injustices experienced by the blacks, for organizations like these to have their efforts shared publicly is a step towards further progression.

McClendon is now home with his family, Kevin Fenner Sr. is expected to be released in the next couple weeks. Supporters interested in helping either of them restart their lives may send a donation to the Buried Alive Project via CashApp $buriedaliveproject.

To learn more about the Buried Alive Project or MiAngel Cody @lawyermiangel and Brittany K Barnett @msbkb visit https://www.thedecarcerationcollective.org or email info@decarcertationcollective.org. Follow Buried Alive Project @buriedaliveproject. 

The Decarceration Collective
@thedecarcerationcollective  · Nonprofit Organization


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