Trump commutes sentence of nonviolent drug offender Alice Johnson following plea by Kim Kardashian West

  • President Trump has commuted the sentence of a nonviolent drug offender whom Kim Kardashian West advocated for.
  • The development comes on the heels of Trump's pardoning of conservative pundit Dinesh D'Souza.
  • Kardashian West visited the White House last week to advocate for Johnson.

President Donald Trump commuted the sentence of a nonviolent drug offender on Wednesday, a week after Kim Kardashian West went to the White House to lobby for the move.

Axios first reported the news, citing a source with direct knowledge of the situation. The outlet also reported that White House counsel Don McGahn was skeptical of the merits of a pardon for the woman, Alice Johnson.

Alice Marie Johnson
Courtesy of the Johnson family
Alice Marie Johnson

The White House later confirmed the commutation.

The development comes on the heels of Trump's pardoning of conservative pundit Dinesh D'Souza, who had pleaded guilty to campaign finance charges. The president also said he was considering a pardon for lifestyle guru Martha Stewart and a commutation for disgraced former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

Trump has also claimed the right to pardon himself, as the special counsel's Russia probe continues to swirl around his presidency. The investigation is looking into whether the Trump campaign colluded with the Kremlin during the 2016 election, and whether the president obstructed justice. He has denied both.

Johnson, 63, was convicted of drug-trafficking charges and was sentenced to life in prison in 1996. Kardashian West joined the cause for Johnson's clemency after she watched a prison video published by the online outlet Mic. Johnson argued that she had turned to the world of cocaine trafficking because she was in a desperate situation.

Source: The White House

Kardashian West visited the White House last week to advocate for Johnson.

The reality TV star celebrated the news on Twitter.

Read the White House's statement on the commutation:

Today, President Donald J. Trump granted a commutation to Alice Marie Johnson, a 63-year-old great-grandmother who has served almost 22 years in Federal prison for a first-time criminal offense.

Ms. Johnson has accepted responsibility for her past behavior and has been a model prisoner over the past two decades. Despite receiving a life sentence, Alice worked hard to rehabilitate herself in prison, and act as a mentor to her fellow inmates. Her Warden, Case Manager, and Vocational Training Instructor have all written letters in support of her clemency. According to her Warden, Arcala Washington-Adduci, "since [Ms. Johnson's] arrival at this institution, she has exhibited outstanding and exemplary work ethic. She is considered to be a model inmate who is willing to go above and beyond in all work tasks."

While this Administration will always be very tough on crime, it believes that those who have paid their debt to society and worked hard to better themselves while in prison deserve a second chance.

CORRECTION: This story was updated to clarify that Trump commuted Johnson's sentence, reflecting a correction from Axios.