On October 15, 2020, Louisiana Parole Project successfully advocated for the release of Fair Wayne Bryant, who was sentenced to life in prison and served 24 years for attempting to steal a pair of hedge clippers. Join Parole Project in making a difference as Fair Bryant rebuilds his life.
We are asking for donations to benefit Mr. Bryant. You can make an impact. Donations made through this GoFundMe page will go directly toward Mr. Bryant's driving school, clothing, personal items and other immediate needs that help to ensure that his transition back into society is a successful one.
Thanks in advance for your contribution.
On a warm October afternoon, Fair Wayne Bryant walked out of the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola after nearly 24 years of incarceration. The state parole board granted his release at a hearing earlier that morning. In a matter of hours Fair found himself walking out of prison and into a world in a world he did not recognize, carrying a cardboard box containing the totality of his possessions. In 1997 Bryant was sentenced to life without parole for attempting to steal a pair of hedge clippers. At that time, Louisiana's habitual offender law could be applied to enhance minor convictions. Bryant had been convicted of multiple minor crimes and the law allowed prosecutors to pursue a life sentence.
In the years leading up to the conviction that resulted in his life sentence, Bryant struggled with addition and served multiple short sentences for crimes related to his drug use. As he cycled in and out of jail, he was never afforded the opportunity to get professional help for his addition. While incarcerated at Angola, Fair participated in extensive programming that included substance abuse counseling. He was finally able to recognize that he did indeed have a problem with drugs and was able to receive the knowledge and tools he needs to remain sober.
A 2016 change in Louisiana’ habitual offender law gave Bryant the opportunity to go before the parole board to present evidence that he has been rehabilitated and deserved to be released. Fair Bryant’s story reminds us that extreme prison sentences do not benefit society.
Parole Project was there advocating for Bryant at his hearing and at the gates of Angola when he was released. Bryant now resides in Parole Project's Redemption Homes, one of our transitional living houses. He is also participating in our intensive reintegration programming, a series of classes, workshops and coaching sessions designed to meet the needs of those who have served long prison sentences. Parole Project is committed to helping Fair Bryant rebuild his life, but we need your help. Parole Project is providing Bryant with his basic needs such as housing, food, and transportation, and we are connecting him to vital resources like healthcare. But he will need much more in order to begin to thrive as a free person. Fair needs funds for clothing, shoes, and personal hygiene supplies. He will also need $400 to cover the cost of driving school and a driver's license.
More information about Louisiana Parole Project : Parole Project is a 501(c)3 organization that provides legal advocacy and reentry services to long-serving parole eligible persons sentenced to life in prison.
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- Elizabeth Larose