Obama commutes more prison sentences than past nine presidents combined

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WASHINGTON, D.C. (WGNO) – President Obama commuted federal prison sentences for 214 people today. Of those, six are from Louisiana, and one is from New Orleans.

According to ABC, this brings the total number of commutations granted by Obama to 562, more than the previous nine presidents combined, Obama said on his Facebook page.

This is the most commutations issued by a president in a single day since 1900. The vast majority of the commutations were drug cases.

“The more we understand the human stories behind this problem, the sooner we can start making real changes that keep our streets safe, break the cycle of incarceration in this country, and save taxpayers like you money,” Obama said on his Facebook page.

The following people from Louisiana received shortened sentences:

•             Steven C. Hall – Gonzales, LA

Offense:         1. Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine base; distribution

of cocaine base; Middle District of Louisiana   2. Supervised release violation (conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine base; distribution of cocaine base); Middle District of Louisiana

Sentence:        1. 240 months’ imprisonment; 10 years’ supervised release (April 22, 2005)

2. 45 months’ imprisonment (consecutive) (February 16, 1996)

Commutation Grant: Prison sentence commuted to expire on August 3, 2018, conditioned upon enrollment in residential drug treatment.

•             Walter Lee Johnson – Shreveport, LA

Offense: Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine hydrochloride; conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of cocaine base; Western District of Louisiana

Sentence: Life imprisonment; 10 years’ supervised release (September 14, 2000)

Commutation Grant: Prison sentence commuted to expire on December 1, 2016.

•             Jeremy Payton – Winnfield , LA

Offense: Conspiracy to distribute 50 grams or more of cocaine base; Western District of Louisiana

Sentence: 240 months’ imprisonment; 10 years’ supervised release (January 8, 2008)

Commutation Grant: Prison sentence commuted to expire on December 1, 2016.

•             William C. Robertson, Sr. – New Orleans, LA

Offense: Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine; possession with intent to distribute cocaine; Northern District of Florida

Sentence: 240 months’ imprisonment; 10 years’ supervised release; $1,000 fine (November 8, 2001)

Commutation Grant: Prison sentence commuted to expire on December 1, 2016.

•             Andrew Simmons, III – Lake Charles, LA

Offense: Possess with intent to distribute cocaine base; possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime; Western District of Louisiana

Sentence: 300 months’ imprisonment; 10 years’ supervised release (September 14, 2006)

Commutation Grant: Prison sentence commuted to expire on August 3, 2018, conditioned upon enrollment in residential drug treatment.

•             Vincent Thomas – Gonzales, LA

Offense: Violations of the Federal Controlled Substances Act (two counts); Eastern District of Louisiana

Sentence: 240 months’ imprisonment; 10 years’ supervised release (March 26, 2008)

Commutation Grant: Prison sentence commuted to expire on December 1, 2016.