Prisoner Profiles

Many people have been deeply affected by rigid mandatory minimum sentencing laws. FAMM highlights the human costs of these laws by sharing prison profiles. Read through the profiles below and judge for yourself whether these sentences seem fair.

Federal Profiles Florida Profiles Massachusetts Profiles
Other State Profiles Released Prisoners Family Perspectives

Sara Moore: “A Great Little Kid”

  Sara was so far into her drug addiction that nothing mattered. Not friends, family, or work. She sold drugs out of her apartment and was arrested, and because she lived in a school zone, her sentence was much greater than it would have been otherwise. She knew she was in a school zone, she… Read more »


My Story: Cassie M.

Cassie’s husband Chris is in prison for six years on a wire fraud charge. They married just months before his incarceration, and the years since have made her an outspoken and fearless advocate for criminal justice reform. She shares here the roller-coaster of emotions that families of prisoners go through. “Happy Thanksgiving.” That was the… Read more »


William Forrester

William Forrester became addicted to pain medication after surgery. In the fierce grip of his disease, he obtained oxycodone with a fake prescription. He badly needed help with his addiction; instead he is now in state prison for a mandatory 15 years. “The pain never seemed to go away, no matter how much medication I… Read more »


Terrance Davis

  Because of the Drug-Free School Zone Act in Tennessee, this low-level drug offender is serving a decade longer than he would have without that enhancement. A distance of 101 feet. For Terrance Davis, that length was the difference between 12 years in prison—with the possibility of parole after serving four years—and the sentence he… Read more »


My Story: Kaylee G.

For most of Kaylee’s childhood, her father was incarcerated. She was one of the astounding 2.7 million children in the United States growing up with a parent in prison. Now she is an adult with a child of her own, and she is a passionate advocate for reform. Her father will remain behind bars for… Read more »


Jodi Richter

Jodi Richter was sentenced to 15 years for her minor part in a drug conspiracy that involved more than 500 grams of methamphetamine distributed in North Dakota, Minnesota, and elsewhere. Her story—with its myriad threads of addiction and mental illness and the lengthy sentence that came at its end—is at once complicated yet all too… Read more »


Michael Giles

      Michael is a veteran serving a mandatory 25-year sentence under Florida’s 10-20-Life law after he fired two shots in self-defense, shots that did not seriously injure his attacker. On Feb. 6, 2010, active duty air force serviceman Michael Giles was invited to a Tallahassee nightclub by a few of his friends. Giles,… Read more »


Cynthia Powell: 25 Years for 35 Pills

  Cynthia Powell was not an addict. She was not a dealer. She sold 35 of her diabetes pain pills to a confidential informant—for $300. Just enough to make ends meet that month. Next thing she knew, she was arrested, charged, and convicted. Her sentence? Twenty-five years.     On April 11, 2002, a battered… Read more »


Nichole Marie Forde

Nichole Forde’s life was spiraling downward. Abused as a child, living on the streets, two suicide attempts … When she was finally convicted of selling drugs in 2010, it might have been a blessing in disguise. Nichole needed a change. A reasonable prison sentence could have helped her repay her debt to society and turn… Read more »


Robyn Hamilton

Robyn Hamilton used drugs and had “bad thinking,” in her words, and she was caught up in a drug conspiracy that netted her a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years. The judge in her trial did not want to sentence her as he was compelled. “Just so the record is clear, if the – if this… Read more »


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