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After serving 15 years in prison, Cyntoia Brown was released from Tennessee Prison for Women. She was sentenced for life after killing a man who solicited her for sex.
“Early this morning offender Cyntoia Denise Brown was released from the Tennessee Prison for Women,” the Tennessee Department of Correction said in a statement issued at 3:26 a.m. (4:26 a.m. ET).
Her story garnered national attention and celebrities such as Kim Kardashian West, Rihanna and Alyssa Milano advocated on her behalf and cited as “an example of the need for criminal justice reform.”
According to CBS News, Brown was 16 when she shot and killed 43-year-old Johnny Mitchell Allen in 2004 after he allegedly paid her for sex. She said that she shot Allen, of Nashville, when she saw him reaching for what she believed was a gun while they were in bed at his home.
In a statement released after Brown was granted clemency, thanked Haslam and her supporters and vowed to spend the rest of her life helping others.
“My hope is to help other young girls avoid ending up where I have been,” she said.