Betty Jo Rains – 22 years – First Offense – NOW FREE due to First Step Act

Name: Betty Jo Rains #20446-017
Age: 60
Race: White
Raised: Florida
Case: Florida
Will live: Florida
Charges: Conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute more than 5 kilos of cocaine and possession of  firearms in the furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.
Pled guilty: revoked
Sentence: 22 years and 7 months
Served: 10 years
Started sentence: May 26th 2009
Priors: First Offense
Prison Conduct: outstanding/ no bad conduct
Clemency status: Met clemency project 2014 criteria but denied, resubmitted and currently pending #C278471

Betty Jo and her mom

Release date: November 2023
Institution: Coleman Camp


         Completed many classes …

  • 2 vocational courses ( building trades:
  • Home inspection and Call center)
  • Rdap the 6
  • 6 month non residential
  • accepted to the year long program,
  • 150 hours of getting it right class,
  • GED passed,
  • drivers license course and got my license,
  • life skills,
  • CDL drivers class
  • computer classes,
  • anger management,
  • victim awareness
  • Personal Growth,
  • Job Fairs,
  • Life skills,
  • writing class,
  • Mavis beacon typing,
  • Relationship issues,
  • Nutrition,
  • women’s health,
  • coping skills
  • developing insight
  • managing stress
  • dealing with domestic violence,
  • miracle planet
  • the human body

According to Betty Jo Rains, 

I feel my sentence is grossly disproportionate to the crime.  I am currently serving a sentence that would likely be substantially lower today, and the firearms charge would be an enhancement rather than a separate charge, therefore reducing my sentence. I have served nearly 12 years and I have a very strong desire to put my prison experience and my passion for injustice of the criminal justice system to help those that have also been subjected to the unjust rulings and draconian sentencing of the past. I want my voice to be heard !

More than anything, I want to be there for my family and sons.  My release plan is to work hard to repair the damage I’ve caused and to help run my family business of property management (see last paragraph). Our family has both business and residential properties my mother acquired during her years as a successful real estate broker in Gainesville Florida.

I want to be able to take the weight off my young son, now in his twenties, and my older brother, now in his seventies, who have been running the family business and dealing with two lawsuits since my mother fell ill a few years back with leukemia and lost the ability to run the family business. They’re overwhelmed by the weight of it all, having stepped in at the last moment with no preparation or prior information, and are having issues that I feel I could contribute to solving.  I previously played an active role in the business and I believe that I could take over my old role, freeing them up to do what they do best, and protecting my family’s livelihood.

My case was accepted by the Clemency Project 2014 that President Obama set up.  I had to clear several layers before being accepted and assigned an attorney and for that reason I was devastated when my petition was denied.  The attorney assigned to my case, Erin Ogburn did a fabulous job and put so much work into my petition that I am including it with my newly filed petition to President Trump.  I hope and pray that he will find me worthy of a second chance because I will never give him a reason to regret it.

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