Source: Rolling Stone
Cyntoia Brown was only 16 when she was sentenced to life in prison, and the Tennessee Supreme Court ruled last week that she will have to serve 51 years before she can be eligible for release.
Brown was convicted of murder and robbery for killing 43-year-old Johnny Mitchell Allen in 2004 after he solicited her for sex and brought her to his home. Brown claimed her actions were in self-defense because she was afraid Allen was going to kill her.
Brown said she had run away from her adoptive family weeks before and was living with her 24-year-old abusive boyfriend known as Kut Throat. Brown’s lawyers allege that Kut Throat raped Brown and forced her into prostitution, making her a sex trafficking victim, as she was not an adult at the time.
Brown claimed that on the day of the murder, Kut Throat hit her and insisted she go out and bring home money.
An Independent Lens documentary, “Me Facing Life: Cyntoia’s Story,” that profiled her story aired on PBS in 2011.
Stars such as Rihanna and Kim Kardashian West have been lobbying in protest of the life sentence, and her story has been shared across social media with the hashtag #FreeCyntoiaBrown.
Read the story at Rolling Stone.
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