Governor Andrew M. Cuomo in the present day granted clemency to 21 people who’ve demonstrated substantial proof of regret, rehabilitation and a dedication to the group.
“In New York, we consider the legislation needs to be simply, in addition to compassionate.” Governor Cuomo mentioned. “Authorities is uniquely located to harness the energy of redemption, encourage those that have dedicated crimes to interact in significant rehabilitation and assist these people work towards a greater future for themselves and others. These receiving pardons have, for years, demonstrated they’re robust functioning members of their group and deserving of a clear slate that can enable them to flee the stigma of a long-ago conviction. These receiving sentence commutations have undergone a profitable rehabilitation, demonstrated true regret their actions and proven themselves to be worthy of an opportunity to re-enter society. These clemencies are one other step towards a extra truthful and a extra empathetic New York and I thank the devoted volunteer attorneys representing clemency candidates for his or her dedication and pursuit of justice and rehabilitation.”
Kaydian McKenzie, 43, was convicted of Legal Possession of Marijuana within the Second Diploma and Legal Trespass within the Third Diploma in 2001 and 2002. Ms. McKenzie has been crime free for 18 years, is a registered nurse, and has labored at a nursing dwelling in New York State all through the COVID-19 public well being disaster. Along with her position as a frontline employee, Ms. McKenzie is the mom of three U.S. citizen and is lively in her native church, the place she has volunteered with a program that delivers meals to older New Yorkers who’re dwelling alone. A pardon will assist Ms. McKenzie stay in america along with her household.
Rosario Pena, 61, was convicted of Petit Larceny and Tried Theft within the Second Diploma in 1981 and 1986. Ms. Pena was pressured to commit these crimes by intercourse traffickers to whom she fell sufferer. After a childhood marred by abuse, homelessness and years of victimization by traffickers, Ms. Pena has now been crime free for 34 years. A pardon will enable Ms. Pena to stay in america, the place she has lived for greater than 50 years.
Alejandro Padilla, 57, was convicted of Legal Sale of a Managed Substance within the Fifth Diploma in 2005. Mr. Padilla’s conviction occurred within the years following a life-altering accident through which he was struck by a automotive and severely injured. He struggled with the bodily and psychological affect of his accidents. He has been crime free for almost 16 years, has no different prison convictions, and lives in america with a big and close-knit household, together with his accomplice of over 25 years and 6 U.S. citizen kids. A pardon will enable Mr. Padilla to stay in america along with his household.
Rosa Sosa Vega, 59, was convicted of Legal Sale of a Managed Substance within the Third Diploma in 1991. Ms. Sosa Vega was convicted shortly after arriving in america following her escape from an abusive relationship out of the country. Whereas serving her sentence, she earned her GED and underwent substance abuse therapy. In almost three many years she has not had a prison conviction. She lives in New York along with her sons, grandchildren, and different members of her household. She is actively concerned in her church group. A pardon will enable Ms. Sosa Vega to stay in america along with her household.
Harrison Redd, 67, was convicted of Tried Legal Sale of a Managed Substance within the Third Diploma in 1996. Mr. Redd’s conviction occurred throughout an especially troublesome interval in his life, after he misplaced his job to an harm and have become homeless following a hearth that destroyed his condominium. Mr. Redd has lived in america for greater than 40 years and has been crime free for the previous 24 years. A pardon will assist him fulfill his dream of turning into a U.S. citizen.
Salvador Sabino Jimenez, 63, was convicted of Legal Possession of a Managed Substance within the Third Diploma, Theft within the First Diploma, and Tried Legal Possession of a Weapon within the Third Diploma. Mr. Jimenez has obtained his Bachelor’s and PhD in Divinity. He based the Salvador Evangelistic Affiliation and Church in 1990. The church now has 1,200 members domestically and 200 worldwide websites. He’s an writer of 4 books, together with an autobiography through which he discusses his private path to rehabilitation. He has additionally assisted in post-hurricane reduction work in Puerto Rico. He has ten honorary awards, six of that are proclamations from New York State legislators, largely pertaining to his hurricane reduction efforts. He has been crime-free for 34 years. A pardon will enable him to turn into a U.S. citizen and extra freely journey internationally to do reduction work along with his church.
Natasha Joseph, 34, was convicted of Tried Forgery within the Second Diploma in 2012. Ms. Joseph has no different prison convictions and has been crime free for 8 years whereas working in a supervisory place within the restaurant trade. She is a single mom of two younger kids, each of whom are U.S. residents. A pardon will enable Ms. Joseph to stay in america along with her kids.
Victor Medina, 53, was convicted of Tried Legal Sale of a Managed Substance within the Third Diploma in 1998. Within the 22 years since, Mr. Medina has been gainfully employed, first working in development after which as a truck driver. He now works as a faculty bus driver, transporting kids with disabilities to high school in New York Metropolis. A lot of Mr. Medina’s speedy household resides in america, together with his son who’s a Marine Corps veteran and served in Afghanistan. A pardon will assist Mr. Medina stay in america along with his household.
Edouard Connor, 52, was convicted in 1992 and 1993 of Legal Possession of a Managed Substance within the Fifth Diploma and prostitution-related offenses, together with Loitering for the Functions of Prostitution. Mr. Connor has not had a prison conviction for 27 years and has labored as a purchaser and window show designer for a clothes retailer for almost 20 years. He’s deeply concerned in New York’s vibrant Caribbean-American group, working an organization that designs elaborate costumes for Carnival celebrations in New York and all over the world and collaborating in cultural and academic occasions for youth in his group. A pardon will enable Mr. Connor to stay within the U.S. along with his household, together with his accomplice, mom, and siblings.
Zouhair Mouflih, 43, was convicted of Grand Larceny within the Third Diploma in 2000. Mr. Mouflih was 22 years previous on the time of the crime. Since his conviction, he has been employed within the meals service trade in New York Metropolis. Mr. Mouflihis married to a U.S. citizen and has a U.S. citizen daughter. He has been crime free for 20 years. A pardon will enable him to stay in america along with his spouse and little one.
Jolanta Wisniewska, 58, was convicted of Petit Larceny and Tried Petit Larceny between 2005 and 2013. Her crimes concerned shoplifting and have been non-violent. She has been crime free for 7 years. She has been married to a U.S. citizen and has two kids and three grandchildren. She is presently a caregiver to her aged mom, who can also be a U.S. citizen. A pardon will assist Ms. Wisniewska stay in america and turn into a U.S. citizen as effectively.
Rafael Hernandez, 50, was convicted of Theft within the Third Diploma in 1994. Mr. Hernandez was 23 years previous on the time of the crime and has been crime free for 26 years. He has been employed by the New York Metropolis Division of Correction since 2002, and lives in New York along with his mother and father and three kids, all of whom are U.S. residents. He arrived in america as a toddler. A pardon will enable Mr. Hernandez to turn into a U.S. citizen.
Thomas Cabrera, 52, was convicted of Tried Legal Sale of a Managed Substance within the Third Diploma in 1990. Mr. Cabrera has been crime free for 30 years. He has no different convictions and works to assist his household. He has additionally labored for a nonprofit that gives meals to the homeless. He has been married for 30 years, has one son and helps take care of his mom. A pardon will enable him to stay in america.
Rosemarie Robinson, 54, was convicted of Legal Possession of Marijuana within the Third Diploma in 2000. She has been crime free for 20 years. She is a frontline employee with two jobs – one as a cook dinner and the opposite as a affected person care assistant at an assisted dwelling facility the place she has labored all through the COVID-19 public well being disaster. She has lived in america for 29 years. She has 5 kids, three of whom are U.S. residents, and 5 grandchildren. Ms. Robinson has been the only real supplier of her kids, at instances working three jobs, and continues to assist them. She hopes to open her personal restaurant sooner or later. A pardon will enable her to stay in america.
Maria Ordonez, 26, was convicted of Manslaughter within the First Diploma in 2018. She has served six years out of a nine-year sentence. Ms. Ordonez’s childhood was stuffed with abuse and neglect. At age 20, she killed her abusive boyfriend throughout an incident the place he was beating and choking her. Whereas in custody, Ms. Ordonez has participated in vocational coaching and pc restore and has taken school programs by means of Marymount Manhattan School. Her professors have counseled her dedication to her research. She has maintained a constant work historical past whereas incarcerated and has acquired optimistic work stories from supervisors. Upon launch, she plans to dwell along with her mom and brother.
Theresa Debo, 64, was convicted of Homicide within the Second Diploma in 2006. She has served 16 years of a 22 years to life sentence. As a baby, Ms. Debo was faraway from an abusive household setting and positioned in foster care. She cycled out and in of abusive relationships all through her grownup life, together with a relationship with sufferer of the crime for which she has now been incarcerated for greater than 16 years and who she maintains she killed in self-defense. Ms. Debohad no prior prison historical past. Whereas incarcerated, Ms. Debo has participated in quite a few applications addressing the results of abuse. Ms. Debo has earned certification as a hospice help and has participated in a number of animal caretaker coaching applications, together with Puppies Behind Bars in addition to veterinary help, pet grooming, and canine obedience coaching.
Arnold Raimondo, 70, was convicted of Homicide within the Second Diploma and Legal Possession of a Weapon within the Second Diploma in 1983. He has served 39 years out of a 50-year to life sentence. Mr. Raimondo is a Vietnam veteran who enlisted on the age of 17 and served within the Vietnam Struggle. Upon return, he suffered from PTSD that manifested itself in damaging conduct. Whereas incarcerated he has advocated for incarcerated veterans with PTSD, together with the enlargement of alternatives for veterans to entry remedy and therapy. Mr. Raimondo has co-authored an article about PTSD that was offered at an annual assembly of the American Society of Criminology and has accomplished two semesters at Marist School. He has lived within the honor block for greater than a decade. He additionally writes poetry and paints murals. Upon launch, Mr. Raimondo will dwell along with his sister and work at his brother’s carpentry enterprise.
Clifton Williamson, 43, was convicted of Homicide within the Second Diploma, Tried Theft within the Second Diploma, Legal Possession of a Managed Substance within the Third Diploma, and Legal Possession of a Managed Substance within the Fourth Diploma in 1996 and 1997, crimes he dedicated at 18-years-old. He has served 25 years of a 25-year to life sentence. Whereas he was convicted of Homicide he was not the one who pulled the set off. Mr. Williamson had a troublesome upbringing and was raised in foster houses earlier than being adopted into a house the place he was abused. After reporting that abuse, he was relocated to a shelter earlier than ending up on the streets at age 17. Whereas incarcerated, Mr. Williamson has earned a Journeyman Electrician certificates as effectively his GED, an Affiliate’s diploma, and a Bachelor’s diploma, graduating from the Bard Jail Initiative in 2019 after majoring in arithmetic. He additionally based a GED tutoring program for incarcerated people, has been a scholar within the Cornell Jail Training Venture, and has participated within the Bard Jail Initiative’s debate program, competing in opposition to debate groups from Harvard, Brown, and Vermont College. Throughout his incarceration, Mr. Williamson additionally co-founded the Phoenix Gamers Shakespeare Theater Group and has participated in Rehabilitation By means of the Arts.
Jacinto Cedeno, 55, was convicted of Legal Sale of a Managed Substance within the First Diploma, Legal Possession of a Managed Substance within the First Diploma, Legal Possession of a Managed Substance within the Second Diploma, and Legal Possession of a Managed Substance within the Third Diploma in 1996. He has served 15 years of a 38.5-year to 50-year sentence. Whereas in custody, Mr. Cedeno has held plenty of jobs, together with Administrative Porter – a trusted place which helps the Govt Staff and facility Superintendent. He has additionally accomplished drug rehabilitation and anger administration applications. Mr. Cedeno earned his GED whereas in custody, has lived on the distinction block and is an lively member of the religion group. Upon launch, he’ll be deported to the Dominican Republic, his dwelling nation and might be reunited along with his household.
Gus Bethea, 38, was convicted of Theft within the First Diploma in 2003. Mr. Bethea has served 18 years of a 25-year sentence for 2 avenue robberies. Whereas in custody, he was valedictorian of his GED class and earned his Affiliate’s diploma with honors from SUNY Sullivan Group School by means of Hudson Hyperlink, a program that gives school lessons for individuals who are incarcerated. He has served as a GED tutor, a chapel clerk, and an inmate chief for Kids of Promise, which helps the youngsters of incarcerated people. Upon launch, he’ll dwell along with his spouse and proceed to work in direction of a level in Legal Justice.
Joseph Norman, 60, was convicted of Theft within the First Diploma and Assault within the Second Diploma in 2004. He dedicated the crimes to assist a drug dependancy. He has served 16 years out of a 20 years to life sentence. Mr. Norman has been sober since his incarceration and has accomplished substance abuse rehabilitation programming. Whereas incarcerated, he has earned his GED, participated in anti-violence programs, and has labored full time in meals service roles. Mr. Norman has had a clear jail disciplinary report and has lived on the distinction block for almost a decade.