Alice Marie Johnson Biography
Alice Marie Johnson is an an American criminal justice reform advocate and former federal prisoner. She was convicted in 1996 for her involvement in a Memphis cocaine trafficking organization, and was sentenced to life imprisonment.
In June 2018, after serving 21 years in prison, Marie Johnson was released from the Federal Correctional Institution, Aliceville, after President Donald Trump commuted her sentence.
Alice Marie Johnson Age
She was born on 30 May 1955 in Brooklyn, New York City, New York, United States. She is 63 years old as of 2018.
Alice Marie Johnson Height
Johnson stands at a height of 5 feet 7 inches tall.
Alice Marie Johnson Family
Not much is known about her prents but Johnson was raised along her sister Coria Williams.
Alice Marie Johnson Husband
Alice Marie Johnson is a divorcee. She is a mother of five children; she lost her youngest son in a motorcycle accident. She became a grandmother and great-grandmother while imprisoned.
Alice Marie Johnson Net Worth
Johnson has an estimted net worth of bout $1 million to $5 million.
Alice Marie Johnson Salary
Johnson earns an estimted salary of about $10000 to $50000 annually.
Alice Marie Johnson Crime and sentence
She was arrested in 1993 and convicted in 1996 of eight federal criminal counts relating to her involvement in a Memphis, Tennessee-based cocaine trafficking organization.
In addition to drug conspiracy counts, she was convicted of money laundering and structuring, the latter crime because of her purchase of a house with a down payment structured to avoid hitting a $10,000 reporting threshold. The Memphis operation involved over a dozen individuals.
The indictment described her as a leader in a multi-million dollar cocaine ring, and detailed dozens of drug transactions and deliveries.
Evidence presented at trial showed that the Memphis operation was connected to Colombian drug dealers based in Texas. In 1997, Johnson was sentenced to life imprisonment.
At the sentencing hearing, U.S. District Judge Julia Gibbons said that Marie Johnson was “the quintessential entrepreneur” in an operation that dealt in 2,000 to 3,000 kilograms of cocaine, with a “very significant” impact on the community.
Co-defendants Jerlean McNeil and Curtis McDonald were sentenced to life and 19 years in federal prison, respectively. A number of other co-defendants who testified against Johnson received sentences between probation and 10 years.
In 2017, Johnson told Mic that she had become involved in the drug trade after losing a longtime job at FedEx due to a gambling addiction, becoming divorced, and experiencing the loss of her youngest son in a motorcycle accident.
According to a profile in Mic, Johnson filed for bankruptcy in 1991, and foreclosure of her house followed. Following her conviction, she acknowledged that she was an intermediary in the drug trafficking organization, but said she did not actually make deals or sell drugs.
Alice Marie Johnson Commutation and Release
Marie Johnson became a grandmother and great-grandmother while imprisoned. She exhibited good behavior in prison, and according to her lawyer, the warden supported her release.
A campaign in support of Johnson’s release was launched by the American Civil Liberties Union and the website Mic; activists who supported her release argued that the punishment was excessive and an example of disproportionate impacts on African-Americans.
A number of individuals and organizations supported Johnson’s bid for clemency, including U.S. Representatives Bennie Thompson, Steve Cohen, and Marc Veasey, law professors Marc Morjé Howard and Shon Hopwood, and Orange is the New Black author Piper Kerman.
She was one of the 16,776 petitions filed in the Obama administration’s 2014 clemency project. In 2016, Johnson wrote an op-ed for CNN asking for forgiveness and a second chance. Her application was denied just before Obama left office.
In 2018, Kim Kardashian and Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner sought to persuade Trump to grant clemency to Marie Johnson. In late May 2018, Kim Kardashian met Trump in the Oval Office to urge him to pardon Johnson.
On June 6, 2018, following Kardashian’s appeal, Trump commuted Johnson’s sentence, and she was released.
The commutation was one of a series of acts of clemency made by Trump in a “few high-profile cases brought to him by associates and allies.” The Washington Post’s Wonkblog described the pardon as somewhat surprising given Trump’s past statements in favor of executing drug dealers.
Alice Marie Johnson State of the Union
Johnson was a guest of the president when he delivered the State of the Union on February 5th, 2019. During Trump’s speech, he requested that she stand. Johnson stood, she received a standing ovation by members of the United States Congress and their guests.
Alice Marie Johnson Book
Johnson is the author of a book called After Life: My Journey from Incarceration to Freedom.