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Third and final in a series on the Mexican Drug War By Joe Chivers In previous articles, I’ve covered the history of the Mexican Drug War from its origins until now, so what’s next? It’s a question that’s been pondered by many, from the Mexican people in their own desperate...
Second in a series on the Mexican Drug War By Joe Chivers One of the reasons I was so specifically intrigued to write about the Mexican Drug War is because I feel it is a war that is vastly misunderstood. In most news reports, all you will get is a litany...
By Joe Chivers When we talk about drug decriminalization, the first drug that comes to mind is marijuana, but how does decriminalization affect intravenous drug users (IDUs)? IDUs are largely regarded by the public as the lowest form of drug user, a junkie, who scatters used needles haphazardly in their...
On August 30, 2016 President Obama commuted Rudy Martinez's life sentence!  We reached out to Rudy, and his clemency attorney Mark Osler, for their responses.  Rudy, understandably, was still in disbelief: I'm still in a fucking daze... This is not over, not by a long shot. There is much work to...
First in a series on the Mexican Drug War By Joe Chivers It is no exaggeration to say that the Mexican Drug War is one of the worst crises of modern times. Thanks to a mix of the U.S.’ war on drugs, prohibition, and the black market, anywhere from 56,000-90,000 people...
by Limus Woods African-American Comedian Dave Chappelle did a standup special once called “Killin’ Them Softly”. In it, there is a part where he jokes about police and how they would act if they shot him or knocked him out by mistake. He said that, to cover it up, the...

Kevin Ott

Kevin Ott, 53, is serving a sentence of life without parole for a drug conviction. In April, 2016, Drug War Stories wrote to Kevin and requested a response to a questionnaire. Kevin's responses were received on May 2, 2016. Selections from his response are contained below. Some responses discussing...

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Rudy Martinez – Right the Sentence

In June of 2016, Drug War Stories did an extensive profile of Commuted Drug War...

Weldon Angelos

Weldon Angelos was only twenty-five years old when he was sentenced to a mandatory 55-year prison sentence under mandatory minimum drug and gun laws for selling marijuana.

Obama Commutes 102 More Sentences

Today President Obama commuted the sentences of 102 more prisoners, most of whom were non-violent...

South Carolina police shot a man to pieces over $100 worth of pot then lied about it

He ended up losing his gallbladder and parts of his bowel, colon and rectum. The bullets also damaged his liver, small intestine and pancreas. His lung partially collapsed. His left leg was broken. One of his vertebrae was partially destroyed; two others were fractured. He’ll never walk again or be able to have kids of his own. He’ll also need to use a colostomy bag for the rest of his life.

Ramona Brant Freed After 21 Years

After serving 21 years, 52 year old Romona Brant was finally released on February 1, 2016, after President Obama granted her clemency in December of 2015.