More Prisoner Profiles

There is no shortage of stories of the lives that 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.

Telisha Watkins

Addicted to drugs from an early age, Telisha was sentenced to a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine and cocaine base, because of drug-related priors. President Obama granted her a commutation on July 13, 2015, and she was released on November 10, 2015. Telisha was born… Read more »

Tracy Cowan

Despite a clean record and no evidence proving that she sold drugs, Tracy was sentenced to 20 to 40 years for her ex-boyfriend’s dealing operation. She was arrested before the passage of sentencing reforms in Michigan that would have reduced her sentence. Tracy was raised in the Detroit area.  She enjoyed a happy childhood and… Read more »

Ricky Minor

Ricky is serving a life-without-parole sentence for attempting to manufacture methamphetamine. His sentence is based on prior offenses, even though none of them resulted in prison time. He had been fighting addiction and depression for years when he was sentenced. President Obama commuted Ricky’s sentence on October 6, 2016. When Ricky Minor married the love of… Read more »

Angela & Kimberly Bush

After selling drugs to support their addictions, Angela and Kimberly were sentenced to 15 1/2 years and 19 1/2 years, respectively, based on minimum guideline sentences. The Bush sisters were born and raised in Chattanooga, Tennessee.  Their abusive father abandoned the family when the girls were young, leaving their mother to support eight children on… Read more »

Michael Brandon Shuler

Michael served a 15-year prison sentence for possessing a firearm as a felon, even though he was simply transporting his late mother’s shotgun and pistol to his aunt’s house when he was arrested. He was released in 2015. Michael lived with his father in Lee County, Virginia until the age of 12. His father was… Read more »


Looking for a specific case type? View all Federal Prisoner ProfilesState Prisoner Profiles (including Florida Profiles and Massachusetts Profiles), Former Prisoner Profiles and Family Perspectives. Go back to our Featured Prisoner Profiles