I want Willie Simmons released from prison. For stealing $9 he’s been in prison for 38 yrs

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Willie Simmons (black man) who’s been incarcerated for 38 years for stealing $9. He was convicted for 1st-degree robbery and was sentenced to life without parole in 1982. Please let this man free when I read this article my heart was full. I’m begging the people in Alabama to sign this petition as this is where he’s from. This is a harsh punishment for just stealing $9. Please help me getting Willie released from prison. He’s strong and said he will not give up on getting out one day. For someone to endure this kind of pain is unbelievably heart breaking. Willie is in one the most violent prisons in Alabama and spends his time doing things in prison to stay out of trouble.

Back in 1977, the Alabama Legislature passed the Habitual Felony Offender Act to crack down on repeat criminals. According to the Department of Corrections, at that time, the prison population was 3,455. After a decade, this number skyrocketed to 13,541. And fast-forward to 2014 – the number of prisoners has increased by 840 percent, to 32,467.

Investigative journalist Beth Shelburne recently shared the story of a man currently imprisoned in one of Alabama’s most notorious prisons. She talked to Willie Simmons – a man who got a life sentence without parole – to shed light on the injustice created by the “habitual offender” laws.