Kardashian West lawyer Shawn Holley told ABC News: "I just got off the most wonderful, emotional and awesome phone call with Alice, Kim and Alice's lawyers". "And so I said, 'You know our daughter had her birthday party last night, '" she explained.
Following the commutation, Johnson told MSNBC that this clemency is "saving her life". "It was wonderful. I'm so glad that she was the one who was able to deliver the news to me". The 1994 indictment describes dozens of deliveries and drug transactions, many involving Johnson. As soon as she stepped out of the van, she ran toward waiting family members who greeted her with hugs, flowers and tears.
A grandmother whose life sentence was commuted by President Trump on Wednesday was released from an Alabama prison the same night, her lawyer said. "I can't wait to get back on the workforce. and get back to my community".
As previously reported, the reality star met with Trump at the tail end of May 2018 to speak on behalf of Johnson and other prisoners serving time for nonviolent offenses.
The president has also signaled that he could similarly favor lifestyle guru Martha Stewart, who went to jail for making false statements in an insider trading case, and commute the prison sentence of Rod Blagojevich, a former governor of IL convicted of corruption.
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"I turned my life all the way around in prison and decided I'm not going to just do time or let time do me", she said.
The White House said Alice Johnson had been a model prisoner and worked hard to rehabilitate herself.
The statement added the Trump administration will always be tough on crime but believes those who have paid their debt to society and worked hard to better themselves while in prison deserve a second chance.
She was arrested in 1993 and accused of participating in a drug trafficking and money-laundering operation that distributed cocaine.
Johnson spent more than 20 years in prison and was not eligible for parole.
With Johnson's clemency, there is possibly hope that others facing life for nonviolent charges will also be granted clemency. Three requests were made - one during his first term, two during his second - but they never reached Obama's desk because he followed Justice Department recommendations, a senior Obama administration official told CNN.