Cyntoia Brown will be under supervised parole until 2029.
Cyntoia Brown is a free woman.
Brown, who served 15 years of a life sentence for killing a child predator who paid her for sex, walked out of the Tennessee Prison for Women on Wednesday, August 7th, according to the state’s Department of Corrections. She is 31 years old.
Forced into prostitution as a teen, she was 16 when she was imprisoned for shooting and killing real estate agent Johnny Mitchell Allen in 2004. Allen, who was 43, picked up Brown for sex at a Nashville restaurant. According to Brown, she felt like he was acting erratic that evening. She shot him while he was sleeping, taking his pants, wallet, and some guns in the process.
She was sentenced to life in prison, only eligible for parole after serving 51 years.
However, Brown’s story started to resurface in 2017 because of social media, after celebrities like Rihanna and Kim Kardashian shared the story on their platforms, creating awareness around the case. Lawmakers started advocating for then-governor Bill Haslam to grant her clemency.
In January of 2019, clemency was granted, At the time, he released a statement saying:
Cyntoia Brown committed, by her own admission, a horrific crime at the age of 16. Yet, imposing a life sentence on a juvenile that would require her to serve at least 51 years before even being eligible for parole consideration is too harsh, especially in light of the extraordinary steps Ms. Brown has taken to rebuild her life. Transformation should be accompanied by hope. So, I am commuting Ms. Brown’s sentence, subject to certain conditions.
Before her release on Wednesday morning, Brown’s legal team said that Brown was declining interview requests after her release. Brown also released a statement thanking her supporters:
While first giving honor to God who made all of this possible, I would also like to thank my many supporters who have spoken on my behalf and prayed for me. I’m blessed to have a very supportive family and friends to support me in the days to come. I look forward to using my experiences to help other women and girls suffering abuse and exploitation. I thank Governor and First Lady Haslam for their vote of confidence in me and with the Lord’s help I will make them as well as the rest of my supporters proud.
Brown will be under supervised parole until 2029.
Source: Department of Corrections