When I was sentenced to 33 years to life under the third strike law, I thought my life was over and lost hope. 17 years into sentence, I got tired of feeling hopeless and decided to start attending self-help groups. Soon enough, I was the one leading them. After serving 24 years I was resentenced and released under 1170 (d)(1). I am now enjoying my freedom by giving back to my community through the work with ARC and different local organizations. As a life coach, I help ARC Members by lending my lived experiences to help guide and mentor them as they navigate their own reentry journey.
Understanding all that CA offered me a chance to start fresh; however, I soon realized that even though the landscape changed, those old childhood issues still persisted. In 1990 I found myself making impulsive & irrational decisions whenever stressed. That year, I was sentenced to serve an indeterminate term of 15 years-to-Life. I spent more than 28 years of my life in correctional facilities; however, with hard work, persistence, & divine intervention my life was transformed. I spent a considerable amount of time on self-improvement, earning a High School Diploma, various vocational trades, and self-help certifications. Wanting to help make a difference, I became a Peer Literacy Tutor, Recreational Coach, and Youth Mentor, as I continued to seek self-help through self-improvement.