Cyntoia Brown was finally released this morning after serving 15 years of a life sentence for the 2004 murder of a Nashville real estate agent who bought her for sex.
Brown was granted clemency and released from the Tennessee prison on parole.
She was only at the tender age of 16 when her life was taken from her by the system. Earlier this year, Governor Bill Haslam made the rare move to commute her sentence before his term ended.
Executive clemency in Tennessee is “an act of mercy or leniency providing relief from certain consequence of a criminal conviction,” according to the state’s Executive Clemency Unit.
Cyntoia Brown’s case garnered national attention from A-list celebrities like Rihanna and Kim Kardashian.
In a statement released through her attorney, Brown says she would be using her second chance to help abused women and girls.
“While first giving honor to God who made all of this possible, I would also like to thank my many supporters who have spoken on my behalf and prayed for me,” Brown said just days before her release.
“I’m blessed to have a very supportive family and friends to support me in the days to come. I look forward to using my experiences to help other women and girls suffering abuse and exploitation.”