A black American was sentenced to life in prison for stealing a garden tool. He served 23 years, got rid of his addiction to alcohol and drugs, and began to believe in God.
In the US state of Louisiana, Fair Wayne Bryant, who was sentenced to life in prison for stealing three garden shears, was released. The man spent 23 years in prison, writes the New York Post.
Bryant, 63, received his parole and became free on Thursday 15 October. He was in the penitentiary because he took several garden tools from someone else's garage without asking.
Such a harsh verdict sounded due to the fact that Bryant had already been arrested 22 times before. In his вЂњpiggy bankвЂќ 11 convictions, including an attempted armed robbery in 1979.
The American told the parole commission that in prison he was able to overcome alcohol and drug addiction. In this, he was helped by faith.
вЂњI was a drug addict. But I had almost 24 years to rethink life; I was in constant communication with God to help me,вЂќ Bryant said.
Now at large a man must attend meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous, stay out of the street from 9 pm to 6 am, and carry out socially useful activities.
вЂњThis man's life imprisonment for a failed attempt to steal three hedge shears is completely disproportionate to the crime and does not serve a legitimate criminal purpose,вЂќ said Chief Justice Burnett Johnson.
He also noted that taxpayers spent nearly $519,000 to keep Bryant locked up and would have paid almost $1 million if he remained in prison for another 20 years.