WASHINGTON, D.C. — President Donald Trump signed Executive Grants of Clemency to commute the sentences of 5 individuals Wednesday, including Curtis McDonald.
McDonald was the only one of the 16 suspects in the original 1994 indictment of a Memphis drug ring who was still serving time in prison.
The crime earned two of the 16 suspects a life sentence in federal prison: Alice Marie Johnson and Curtis McDonald.
Johnson was granted clemency in 2018, following a plea from reality TV star Kim Kardashian. Her commutation made national headlines.
She was later granted a full pardon.
A release from the White House reads as follows:
Curtis McDonald was convicted in 1996 for drug trafficking and money laundering and is now 70 years old. After a jury trial, he was sentenced to life in prison. He was a first-time offender who has now served nearly 24 years in prison and has an excellent record of good conduct. Mr. McDonald has made productive use of his time in prison, maintaining employment with good job evaluations, and has completed numerous education courses. Mr. McDonald has also served as a mentor in the Mentors for Life program. He acknowledges that “the law is the law and I broke it” and attests that he is “not the same man I was walking through these doors” decades ago. Mr. McDonald vows that despite his life sentence, he has been determined to “take advantage of every opportunity to help myself grow . . . so that I may be of use to those who want and need it.”
The President also commuted the sentences of Lenora Logan, Rashella Reed, Charles Tanner, and John Bolen.
Cox Media Group