Former Prisoners


Derrick Cain

Derrick started selling cocaine to finance his wife’s education and support his family. He was sentenced to five years in prison for possession with intent to distribute cocaine, plus an additional five years for possession of a firearm, even though Derrick’s gun was never used in connection with cocaine sales. UPDATE: Derrick was released to… Read more »

David Brian Veatch

When his wife fell down a flight of stairs and couldn’t return to work, David became involved in a coworker’s marijuana conspiracy to make ends meet. When the coworker was arrested, law enforcement held David accountable for the entire weight of marijuana produced by the conspiracy despite his limited involvement, and because he also possessed a… Read more »

Angelita Able

Angelita received 20 to 60 years in prison for 225-649 grams of cocaine. While she did not initially benefit from Michigan’s 2003 sentencing reforms, she wrote the court and was ultimately resentenced to six to 30 years. She was released from prison in 2007. Angelita received 20 to 60 years for 225-649 grams of cocaine…. Read more »

Douglas Lindsay

A veteran and a Mental Retardation Specialist, Douglas received a life-without-parole sentence for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and distribution of cocaine and cocaine base. President Obama granted him a commutation on July 13, 2015, and he was released on November 10, 2015. The Daily Signal profiled Douglas and documented his first days of… Read more »

Maria Martinez

In 2002, Maria was staying in the apartment of a friend of her boyfriend’s in Michigan when police raided the apartment and discovered approximately 20 pounds of cocaine and drug paraphernalia. Although police conducting surveillance never witnessed Maria engaged in illegal activity, she ultimately received a 20-year mandatory minimum sentence. She was paroled in March… Read more »

Susan Taormino

Susan received two consecutive five to 30-year sentences in 2000 after selling a half gram of cocaine to a former customer-turned-informant. She was released on March 10, 2009. Susan was born in Michigan where her elderly parents still reside.  After a rough divorce in 1971, she began drinking and abusing cocaine.  She found a job… Read more »

Karen Shook

Karen was sentenced to 20 years in prison in 1993 after arranging a drug deal for a man who turned out to be an undercover police officer. She was released in 2003 after Michigan passed sentencing reforms that made her eligible for parole. In 1994, Karen was a paralegal in her prison library when she… Read more »