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Crystal Mason

Crystal Mason, center, with her legal team in 2018. | Source: Crystal Mason

On Thursday, an appeals court in Texas overturned the conviction and the egregiously absurd five-year sentence handed to a Black woman for a crime she arguably should never have been charged with in the first place.

According to the Texas Tribune, the Tarrant County-based Second Court of Appeals formally acquitted Crystal Mason, who was charged with a felony for casting a provisional ballot in 2016 while on supervised release for a federal conviction, which she didn’t know made her ineligible to vote.

“I am overjoyed to see my faith rewarded today,” Mason said in a statement. “I was thrown into this fight for voting rights and will keep swinging to ensure no one else has to face what I’ve endured for over six years, a political ploy where minority voting rights are under attack.”

“I’ve cried and prayed every night for over six years straight that I would remain a free Black woman,” she continued. “I thank everyone whose dedication and support carried me through this time and look forward to celebrating this moment with my family and friends.”

Mason, who has had her life upended for seven years behind this case, has always maintained that she was unaware she wasn’t eligible to vote, and, when it comes down to it, there was never a reason to believe she did. In fact, the court said in its decision that no evidence had ever been presented that proved she knowingly tried to vote illegally, “which is a condition that must be met in order to convict her of illegal voting,” the Tribune noted.

Despite the lack of evidence, Mason is only being cleared of all wrongdoing after the so-called justice system worked damn hard to treat a Black woman’s life like it doesn’t really matter by taking away her freedom for a frivolous reason.

From the Tribune:

How many courts does it take to unscrew a white supremacist light bulb? 

Seriously, unless they have found explicit evidence of intentional voter fraud, legal officials really need to ask themselves why they’re so eager to put Black people, or anyone for that matter, in prison for any time at all just because they don’t have expert knowledge on all the ins and outs regarding what makes a person eligible to cast a vote.

Of, course, while no one should be locked up for this kind of thing, it’s difficult not to notice that, like in all things “justice” system related, Black people are disproportionately vulnerable to falling victim to having their lives ruined by petty legal technicalities, such as in the cases of Mason, and Pamela Moses, another Black woman, who was sentenced to six years in prison after she was convicted of registering to vote while being ineligible to do so because of past legal issues, a conviction that was also later overturned. (In that case, she literally had a form signed by her probation officer that said she could legally vote, and prosecutors argued she conned her PO into signing it. Like—bruh!)

In fact, right now folks on social media are noting the striking differences in Mason’s treatment compared to that of Georgia Republican Party official Brian Pritchard, who voted illegally while ineligible due to a felony conviction not once, but nine times and was only penalized with a $5,000 fine.

Besides Prichard, who, interestingly enough, promoted Donald Trump’s “big lie” about voter fraud costing him his second term, numerous white Republican voters were sentenced to probation and/or given small fines for voting illegally during the same time period when Mason, Rose and other Black people were drowning in legal woes and being thrown in jail all because they weren’t aware it was illegal for them to have a say in their nation’s electoral process.

This is America.


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The post Justice For Crystal Mason! Black Woman’s Conviction Overturned After Wrongful Prison Sentence For Voting appeared first on NewsOne.

Justice For Crystal Mason! Black Woman’s Conviction Overturned After Wrongful Prison Sentence For Voting  was originally published on