Marissa Alexander Freedom Fundraiser

Marissa Alexander Released from Prison; Supporters Celebrate, Demand FULL FREEDOM!
Update posted by freemarissanow On Jan 28, 2015

January 28, 2015 UPDATE: 

Marissa Alexander Released from Prison;
Supporters Celebrate, Demand FULL FREEDOM!

 

Supporters of Marissa Alexander in Jacksonville, across the US, and all around the world are overjoyed that she has been released from jail after serving 3 years behind bars for defending her life.  On November 24, 2014, Marissa accepted a plea deal that included time served of nearly 3 years in prison, 65 additional days in the Duval County jail, and 2 years of probation while under home detention.  January 27, 2015 marked the end of her time behind bars.

We are thrilled that Marissa will finally be reunited with her children, her family, and her community. Today’s hearing revealed that Marissa intends to attend school to become a paralegal and she is a wonderful mother to her children who urgently need her.  Amazingly, the State continued their campaign of punishment by trying to add two more years of probation on top of the two years of house detention included in the plea. Fortunately, they failed. Marissa and her family will need time to begin recovering from this arduous and traumatic experience. It’s been a long and painful journey and, though her release from jail is definitely a win -- no 60 years -- the journey of seeking ultimate freedom is not over.  Marissa will be forced to be on strict home detention while being under surveillance for two years.  This is by no means freedom in the sense we feel she deserves.  Our next agenda is to seek full restoration for Marissa and her family, including the expunging of her so-called criminal record, and a systemic transformation that prevents black women and all survivors of domestic violence from experiencing the hostile and brutal treatment from policing, prosecution, and prison systems that Marissa has endured. We will push for improved legislation and monitoring of systems that penalize victims of domestic violence who choose to save their lives by force. This is by no means a conclusion.  FMN's full press release is here, and we also recommend this reflection by Mariame Kaba, member of Chicago Alliance to Free Marissa Alexander.
 
We are filled with gratitude for the hundreds of people who have donated and organized fundraisers all around the world.  We want to be very clear: The reason Marissa Alexander is finally out of prison for good is directly because of your political and financial support.  Your donations were CRUCIAL in supporting her pro bono legal team to offer exceptional legal advocacy and your activism ensured that her case stayed in the public eye, which pressured Florida's politicians to pay attention.  Every one of us has a hand in this victory!  Thank you, thank you, thank you.
 
We're going to take a short break, but we'll be back with more specific thank you's and shout outs soon (there are so many!).  In the meantime, feel free to continue to donate to this fund and help Marissa Alexander cover the very expensive process of rebuilding her life.
 
Towards freedom, 
Free Marissa Now Mobilization Campaign
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Update: Marissa Alexander Accepts a Plea Deal
Update posted by freemarissanow On Dec 12, 2014

Dear Marissa Alexander supporters,

 

You may have heard that, on November 24, 2014, Marissa Alexander accepted a plea deal with the State of Florida.  The plea deal includes time served (1,030 days), an additional 65 days in Duval County Jail, and two years of probation while wearing a surveillance monitor. She is expected to be released after a hearing on January 27, 2015 although, because the deal includes an open plea, there's a possibility the judge may sentence Marissa for more time up to 5 years at this hearing, so please be on alert for that date.  Alexander, her legal team, and thousands of supporters were preparing for a likely difficult trial to begin this December.  If found guilty, she would have faced a mandatory 60 year sentence.  

 

The Free Marissa Now Mobilization Campaign supports Marissa Alexander’s self-determination to make the best choices she can while navigating the violent and impossible circumstances created by her abusive husband, Angela Corey, and Florida’s judicial system.  The plea deal is a relief in some ways, but this is far from a victory. The deal will help Marissa and her family avoid yet another very expensive and emotionally exhausting trial that could have led to the devastating ruling of spending the rest of her life in prison.  Marissa’s children, family, and community need her to be free as soon as possible.  However, the absurdity in Marissa’s case was always the fact that the courts punished and criminalized her for surviving domestic violence, for saving her own life.  The mandatory minimum sentences of 20 years, and then 60 years, just made the state’s prosecution increasingly shocking.  But we have always believed that forcing Marissa to serve even one day in prison represents a profound and systemic attack on black women’s right to exist and all women’s right to self-defense.

 

We want to underscore the fact that Marissa has been able to avoid spending the rest of her life in prison directly because of all that you have done.  Your critical actions to keep her name in the public's consciousness, your fundraisers and generous donations that raised over $100,000 in one year, and your consistent outpouring of support have been crucial ingredients that have gotten Marissa this far.  You helped halt a crisis that seemed to just grow bigger by the day.  Thank you so very, very much.

 

The campaign intends to keep going until Marissa is free! It is vital that we keep the momentum of our support and love going until Marissa is restored to her family and community. Marissa has been consistent in her self-advocacy, including defending her life when attacked by her husband, rejecting a punishing three year plea deal offered to her in 2012, and taking the plea offered to her today.  As difficult as it is to see Marissa unjustly sent back to prison, her supporters around the world stand with her.  We are standing our ground that women have the right to defend themselves from violence, and that black women’s lives matter.

 

Follow the Free Marissa Now campaign on our website, facebook, twitter, tumblr, and e-mail listserv for updates. In the meantime, we are continuing to fundraise for Marissa Alexander because she will continue to face legal expenses.  For example, she will be forced to pay for the ankle monitor the state will force her to wear during her 2-year probation.  That alone will cost $26,000.  We will have a report about the enormous costs she's sustained to date and how you've helped cover them soon.  For now, we are raising the goal of this fundraiser to $50,000.  

 

We are in solidarity with the amazing uprisings against police violence and mass incarceration happening around the country.  We want to keep Marissa's name and the names of all black women whose lives have been impacted by police, court, and prison violence at the forefront of these important actions.  Thank you for your ongoing powerful support of Marissa Alexander, movements to end mass incarceration and domestic violence, women's right to self-defense, and black women's right to a safe and joyful existence!

 
Towards freedom,
Free Marissa Now Mobilization Campaign
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Congratulations, you did it again!
Update posted by freemarissanow On Nov 23, 2014

Dear Marissa Alexander supporters,

CONGRATULATIONS! Yet again, Marissa Alexander's supporters have reached a crucial fundraising goal!  You have raised another $40,000 for the Marissa Alexander Legal Defense Fund. Words can not describe how much gratitude Marissa and her family and friends have for the outpouring of support. Your donations, letters, and actions have been truly incredible. THANK YOU SO MUCH! A report on all that the Freedom Fundraiser has accomplished will be coming this week.

A special shout out goes to the fantastic Chicago Alliance to Free Marissa Alexander who, through the #FreeMarissa store and other fundraisers, have raised nearly $16,000 this year!  Visit the store to pick up some beautiful items: https://www.zibbet.com/FreeMarissaAlexander

People have really dug deep and given what they can, from $5 to $5,000!  Folks have created t-shirts, music, art, and community projects that have steered the conversation towards the importance of the issues in this case -- women's right to self-defense, the violence of racism and sexism against black women in their homes and in the courts, devastation caused by mandatory minimums and the prison system, and the systemic criminalization of domestic violence survivors.  Your passion for supporting Marissa and other women incarcerated for navigating the conditions of domestic and sexual violence has shone brightly in this campaign since Marissa received that guilty verdict and 20 year sentence in 2012.  There's no way that she would have gotten this far without your consistent love, rage, and commitment.

Again, we'll have a bigger report about where we go from here later this week. You are welcome to continue to donate to this fundraiser until then!  Every donation is crucial for winning the freedom for Marissa Alexander!

Thank you and much love,
Free Marissa Now Mobilization Campaign

 

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Big Updates for the Movement to Free Marissa Alexander!
Update posted by freemarissanow On Jun 23, 2014

Dear Supporters of Marissa Alexander,

Thank you for your ongoing, crucial support of Marissa Alexander’s freedom!  We have a few BIG updates:

  1. TRIAL UPDATE: Marissa’s trial has been postponed to begin on Dec 8th.  She also has a hearing on Aug 1st when a judge is expected to rule if she will get a new Stand Your Ground hearing.  The judge postponed the decision to give time to the recent changes in Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law to come into effect before he ruled. 

  2. ORGANIZING UPDATE: You are invited to organize during Standing Our Ground Week of Action, July 25-Aug 1!  Reproductive justice organization, SisterSong, is collaborating with local Free Marissa Now organizers to host activities all week in Jacksonville, FL leading up to the Aug 1st hearing.  Come to Jacksonville or prepare to make some noise in your community!  60 years in prison for self-defense???  Not on our watch!  More info here: http://www.freemarissanow.org/standing-our-ground-week.html
  3. FUNDRAISING UPDATE: Supporters have done a fantastic job of raising a total of $76K for the Marissa Alexander Legal Defense Fund. Marissa faces $250K in legal fees, so let's get to $100K before Aug 1st!

    To help, check out the Free Marissa Store for buttons, books, art, and much more!  All proceeds go to the Marissa Alexander Legal Defense Fund! PLUS: A beautiful art-based anthology entitled, No Selves to Defend: A Legacy of Criminalizing Women of Color for Self Defense, is now on sale!  The book features art and info about Marissa’s case along with cases such as the New Jersey Four, CeCe McDonald, Joan Little, and many others.  It is limited edition, and half of the books have already been sold, so purchase today!  Thank you to the Chicago Alliance to Free Marissa Alexander for organizing the store!  More info: http://www.zibbet.com/FreeMarissaAlexander

Thank you for your all you do to support Marissa and all survivors of domestic violence! E-mail us if you want to get in touch at freemarissanow@gmail.com, or connect with us at “freemarissanow” on facebook, twitter, and tumblr.  All updates can be found at freemarissanow.org.

Towards freedom,
Free Marissa Now

No Selves to Defend

 

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