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Libraries Are Key Tools For People Getting Out Of Prison, Even During A Pandemic

NPR: Sally Herships - March 28th, 2021

Almost 28 years ago, Lee and Dennis Horton were accused of a robbery and a murder in a Philadelphia bar. They were convicted and sent to prison. It was 1993. Bill Clinton was president. Sleepless in Seattle was in the theaters. People didn't really use cellphones. They just walked down the street and looked at each other. Now the brothers are in their fifties. After spending a quarter century in prison they were just released.

"When we stepped out of the prison, it was like stepping out into a brand new world," Lee Horton said. "We went into a Burger King. We went in there to try this Impossible Burger. And you had to go to the kiosk and I didn't know how to work the kiosk. We didn't know how to do it. So we left."

The Horton brothers had always maintained their innocence. Inside prison they were widely seen as mentors. They were peer support counselors. They organized workshops for politicians and community leaders and put on plays. A petition with thousands of signatures called for their release. An op-ed ran calling for their freedom on WHYY.

And finally, late last year the Pennsylvania Board of Pardons commuted their sentences. This year they were released.

To read the full article, click here.

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