Cheryl Howard – Life – Received Clemency on 12/19/16

Fox News 13 in Tampa interviewed Cheryl’s daughter, Lavithia Howard and CAN-DO Founder Amy Povah – watch the video: 


Message from Cheryl Howard to CAN-DO Founder Amy Povah: “WOW!! I am OVER JOYED right now!!  God said he would restore everything that the canker worm and the locust ate up!! He did it Amy and I cant wait to get out and testify about the goodness of Him and the people like U that He put into my life such as U and many others that made this all possible and to help fight for those who are still caught up in the struggle!! I love U and I will be emailing and calling U. I need to talk to U!! I will be leaving for R-dap next week so there is so much I need to share. Hit me back when U can and remember we serve not just a “good God” but a “great God”!! Love U
Second email: “This is such a MIRACLE Amy and I cannot stop crying, smiling and praising God!! WE DID IT!!:) I love U and again THANK U for all that U are doing and have done!! I am ready for great things!! Hit me back when U can,” Cheryl.
Read about Cheryl’s clemency in the Herald-Tribune 12/20/16

Read about Cheryl’s clemency in Reason Magazine on 12/20/16

Cheryl’s story gained media exposure, such as this article featured in Glamour Magazine

Cheryl Howard is #4 on the CAN-DO Top 25 Women Who Deserve Clemency
Please sign Cheryl’s clemency petition on

cheryl-howard_squareName: Cheryl Howard, 18389-018,
DOB: 3/6/68,
Age: 48,
Children: 1 child, age 34
Grew up: Sarasota, Florida
Tried: Fort Myers, Florida
Will Live: Tampa, Florida
Charge: 2 counts of possession with intent to distribute, 1 count of Conspiracy,
Sentence: Life without the possibility of parole
Release Date: None
Started Sentence on: October 1994
Served: 22 Years
Priors: Possession of Cocaine Possession of Marihuana, Possession of paraphernalia, Driving on Suspended License (I was a user),
Prison Conduct: I have been in several incidents while incarcerated most were petty incidents but I have remain clear conduct since 2011,
Supporters: I have several officer’s who have written letter’s on my behalf, My mother, Daughter, Brother’s, and friends CAN-DO Foundation, Families for Justice as Healing, The LOHM (Ladies of Hope Ministries) CUT50

Accomplishments in Prison: GED, Vocational Training and Tarrant Community College courses, (2) Pierpont College courses and Creative writing. As employment I have worked for the Life Connections Program (LCP). This program allows inmates to to learn life skills, connect then to their religious faith and be productive. They become successful in their daily lives as well as their future. I am equipped with job skills and was previously offered a job as “House Administrator” at the Home of Greater Joy located in Fort Worth, Tx., which is a transitional home that offers women coming out of prison and institutions a new lease on life, education, counseling, and a structured environment. I will also begin cosmetology in September of 2016 to fulfill hours I have left to complete the course along with beginning the

Cheryl with her mom, Anita

Cheryl with her mom, Anita

instructor’s course as well.
Institution: FMC Carswell Fort Worth, Tx.
Clemency status: Submitted January 2016

According to Cheryl:

I am an African-American female, 48, mother of one, grandmother of three. I am currently incarcerated at FMC Carswell in Fort Worth, Texas, serving a mandatory life sentence without the possibility of parole. I was given this sentence in 1995 after being found guilty of two Counts of Possession With Intent To Distribute Crack Cocaine, and one Count of Conspiracy. I would like to say that the amount I was charged with doesn’t even fill up a Tylenol bottle. Nor was anyone else ever indicted, arrested or convicted for this crime. However, I’m not claiming innocence or trying to minimize my guilt.  I am very remorseful for the bad decisions I’ve made and during the 22 years I’ve been incarcerated, I have truly learned a valuable lesson. I can share many stories about how this time has changed my life.

I would like to elaborate about my plans if and when I’m released. I have taken the liberty to mentor inmates that come into prison from all walks of life. I believe this opportunity will give me a smooth transition at re-entry and also afford me the chance to incorporate my “passion” to counsel others who are experiencing a path similar to my past, including drug addiction, criminal behavior, lack of job skills and lack of self worth.

Cheryl with her daughter, Lavithia

Cheryl with her daughter, Lavithia

Most importantly, I want to reunite with my daughter who has suffered due to my incarceration. She is the victim here and I owe her my time, love and an opportunity for us to heal from our separation. She is a successful young lady and I am very proud of her.  She has achieved so much, despite losing her mother to prison.  My dream is to take her to dinner for her birthday, or cook her her favorite meal – those are the things I miss most of all.

My daughter expresses to me daily what it means to have me home with her and the children. I must say it has been very difficult not being there with her as a mother figure but I am so thankful that she has been able to avoid making bad decissions and getting into trouble. She has been very successful during her years of growing and I am truly thankful unto God for protecting her. I am BEGGING anybody that has resources to fix these unjust sentences to PLEASE do so in order to prevent people such as myself and family from going through these tragic situations and being place in these institutions for LIFE and allowing Murder’s and other violent offender’s to have expected release dates to go and re-offend.

Cheryl's daughter Lavithia Howard

Cheryl’s daughter Lavithia Howard

One of my most heartfelt goals is to start a program called “Fed Up,” Federal Ex-offender’s Driven to their Unexpected Potential. I have seen many people come into these institutions with no purpose, direction, vision or a release date. I realized quickly that whoever got their hands on them first determined what they did next and if the right person mentored them they were pointed in a direction that caused them to be very productive individuals and subsequently, law abiding citizens. I also realize that people who have been hurt, tend to hurt others, but those who can change and forgive, tend to help others. I am not confused about my purpose, passion or calling and I’m asking to PLEASE be given another chance at freedom to demonstrate I can be an asset to society. I can help make the world a better place and I want to prove that to my family and society.
Message from Cheryl’s daughter, Lavithia:

Dear Amy,

I am emailing you in regards to what it would mean to have my mother Cheryl Howard home. As you know she has been incarcerated for the past 22 years. I was 10/12 when she left. I am 34 now with 3 children. I would love for my mother to be home not only to help to try and recover the last 22 years of my life, but to be able to have a relationship with her grandchildren. My mother has always been supportive of me even from a distance and she tries really hard to build a relationship with the kids even though she has never gotten a opportunity to meet them because of the distance. She calls them on a regular, writes them and sends picture so that they can have a picture of not only who she is but what she looks like and she will not be a stranger to them. I love my mother very much and it has been really hard not having her here with me as a child and now as an adult. She is very intelligent and skillful when it comes to doing hair, writting books and having a voice to reach those who are lost in a lifestyle that lead her to where she is now. She has always told me and it sticks with me to this day that “hurt people hurt people but, changed people can help change other’s”!! And she really wants to get out and start her program “fed-up”. Federal Ex-offender’s driven to there unexpected Potential. I do believe this is her calling and it would mean the world to me to have my mother home so that she can have a “New start” at life to do what she is called to do.

Message from Cheryl:

I just want to say I love U Amy and have a Merry Christmas!! U are one of the reason I can say this will be my LAST CHRISTMAS in prison!! To God be the glory!! I am forever grateful for all that U have done and are still doing and know again U are a “blessed favored” woman of God! He has great things in store for U so get ready!! Much love! Have a blessed and again thank U for not only what you’ve done but for who U are,



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