NEW Petition to Free Lynne Stewart: Support Compassionate Release
  • Petitioned Charles E. Samuels, Jr.

This petition was delivered to:

Director, Federal Bureau of Prisons
Charles E. Samuels, Jr.
Attorney General, United States
Eric H. Holder, Jr.

NEW Petition to Free Lynne Stewart: Support Compassionate Release

    1. Ralph Poynter
    2. Petition by

      Ralph Poynter

      Brooklyn, NY

January 2014


From Ralph Poynter: A heartfelt thanks to all who stood by Lynne with letters, emails, petitions and telephone calls to the Federal Medical Center, Carswell, U.S. Federal Bureau of Prisons, Attorney General's Office, U.S. Department of Justice, members of Congress, the White House and U.S. Embassies and who organized and participated in vigils, demonstrations, rallies and speak-outs throughout the world. The enduring global movement for social justice has persevered - ever inspired by Lynne Stewart's steadfast refusal to bend the knee, submit to coercion or official duplicity.

Renowned defense attorney Lynne Stewart, unjustly charged and convicted for the “crime” of providing her client with a fearless defense, is dying of cancer while imprisoned in the Federal Medical Center, Carswell, Texas.


Your action now can lead to her freedom so that she may live out her remaining days with the comfort and joy of her family and those closest to her, including her devoted husband Ralph Poynter, many children, grandchildren, a great grandchild and lifelong friends.


The conservative medical prognosis by the oncologist contracted by the prison is that Lynne Stewart has but 16-months to live. Breast cancer, in remission prior to her imprisonment, reached Stage Four more than a year ago, emerging in her lymph nodes, shoulder, bones and lungs.


Despite repeated courses of chemotherapy, cancer advances in her lungs, resistant to treatment. Compounding her dire condition, Lynne Stewart’s white blood cell count dropped so low that she has been isolated in a prison hospital room since April 2013 to reduce risk of generalized infection.


Under the 1984 Sentencing Act, upon a prisoner’s request, the Bureau of Prisons can file a motion with the Court to reduce sentences “for extraordinary and compelling reasons,” life threatening illness foremost among these.


Lynne Stewart’s recent re-application for compassionate release meets all the criteria specified in guidelines issued by the Bureau of Prisons in August 2013.


These “new guidelines” followed a searing report and testimony before Congress by the Department of Justice’s Inspector General Michael Horowitz. His findings corroborated a definitive report by Human Rights Watch. Inspector General Horowitz excoriated the Federal Bureau of Prisons for the restrictive crippling of the compassionate release program. In a 20-year period, the Bureau had released a scant 492 persons – an average of 24 a year out of a population that exceeds 220,000.


Over 30,000 people of conscience from all walks of life in the United States and internationally took action to free Lynne Stewart following her first application for compassionate release in April of this year.


Among those who raised their voices are former Attorney General Ramsey Clark – who was co-counsel in the case that led to Lynne Stewart’s imprisonment, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, former President of the United Nations General Assembly, Father Miguel D’Escoto Brockmann, Nobel Peace Laureate Mairead Corrigan Maguire, Ed Asner, Daniel Berrigan, Liz McAllister Berrigan, Richard Falk, Daniel Ellsberg, Noam Chomsky, Cornell West, Dick Gregory, Alice Walker and Bianca Jagger.


They along with thousands of individuals and organizations, such as the Center for Constitutional Rights, the National Lawyers Guild and Lawyers Rights Watch Canada, directed letters, phone calls and public declarations to the Federal Bureau of Prisons Director Charles E. Samuels, Jr. and to Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr.


Dick Gregory has refused all solid food since April 4 and his remarkable moral witness will not end until Lynne Stewart is released.


We call upon all to amplify this outpouring of support. We ask all within our reach to convey to Bureau of Prisons Director Samuels his obligation to approve Lynne Stewart’s application and instruct the federal attorney to file the requisite motion for Lynne Stewart’s compassionate release.


Please sign this new petition and reach out to others to sign. The letter below will be sent on your behalf via email to Charles E. Samuels, Jr., Director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons and to Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr. Telephone calls also can be made to the Bureau of Prisons (202) 307-3250/3262.

Write to Lynne Stewart at:

Lynne Stewart #53504-054Unit 2N
Federal Medical Center, Carswell
P.O. Box 27137
Fort Worth, TX  76127



Recent signatures


    1. Reached 10,000 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • kalylo kalylo martinez SANTO DOMINGO, SD
      • 9 months ago


    • marian sunde LOS ANGELES, CA
      • 10 months ago

      She should never have been sent to prison in the first place.

    • Maria Orilla CA, CA
      • 10 months ago

      She was doing her job by serving this country. She took on a case that was brought to her by former Attorney General Ramsey Clark. Please let her spend her time with the most important people to her with the time she has left. It is the least the country can do for a woman who has used her talents to serve this country.

    • Jane starr ANNANDALE, VA
      • 10 months ago

      How is it that someone who meets all the Federal Bureau of Prisons guidelines for compassionate release for terminal medical conditions is not immediately released?? Ms Stewart has devoted her professional life to the poor and oppressed. She, of all people, should be given this compassionate release for the short time she has left....

    • Kenneth Johnson WASHINGTON, DC
      • 10 months ago

      Her time is short. No crime committed.


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