Commutation Campaign for the ‘Virgin Island 3’

[Download PDF Fliers to Print & Distribute]

The campaign to free the Virgin Island 3 is kicking into high gear. Malik, Hanif and Abdul have been imprisoned for 46 years and just applied for commutation of their sentences.

VI3Like many aging prisoners, they are experiencing increasing health problems and pose NO RISK to the society they’ve been locked away from for nearly half a century. Because Governor Mapp’s term is ending and he is up for re-election on November 20th, now is the time to contact him and the other decision makers to express support for their commutation applications.

Because the Governor will be concentrating on the election until late November, we are reserving fax, email and calls until then, but letters can be drafted and mailed now. This is also a good time to urge folks you know who care about social justice to get on board with this campaign! Please take a few minutes to personalize the template below and mail to both the Governor and the Lt. Governor. You can use the same letter to do the fax and email portion of this campaign after the election. This is it; all hands on deck!

Read about the campaign in Malik’s own words and in Hanif’s own words.

How you can help:

1) Write a letter

Please start by writing a letter in support of the VI3’s application to both Governor Mapp and Lt. Governor Potter.

Suggested letter format:

Governor Kenneth Mapp
Government House
21-22 Kongens Gade
Charlotte Amalie
St. Thomas, VI 00802

Lt. Governor Osbert Potter
Office of the Lieutenant Governor
1131 King Street, Suite 101
Christiansted
St. Croix, VI 00820

Re: Warren Ballantine, Meral Smith, and Beaumont Gereau

Introduce yourself. This could include comments about your job, family or work in the community.

Explain how you know their cases and/or how you may know them personally.

Explain why you are concerned (if you are from the VI, explain how this affects your vote and if you are from elsewhere explain how commuting their sentences would positively influence society or your view of the VI).

Some Issues are:
1. Length of time in prison
2. Their deteriorating medical conditions
3. Aging and getting old
4. No community threat (example: from 2009-2015, while they were housed in St. Croix, they were actually allowed to go out in the community to speak to/mentor at-risk youth, sometimes unsupervised, with no issues)

Implore the Governor to commute their sentences. You can mention that you understand that one of their former co-defendants was granted a commutation by the Governor in 1994 and there is no reason why these three men have been held for an additional 23 years.

Respectfully end your letter.
 

2) Fax your letter [after November 20th] to:

  • The Governor’s office at: (340) 693-4374, and
  • The Lt. Governor’s office at: (340) 774-6953

If you do not have a fax machine, you can send a free online fax using faxzero.com.

 

3) Email your letter [after November 20th]:

 

4) Call the three officials in charge of reviewing the commutation applications [as much and as often as possible after November 20th until further notice] to ask if they received your letter/fax/email:

  • Governor Mapp’s Office: (340) 774-0001
  • Lt. Governor Potter’s Office: (340) 774-2991
  • Attorney General Claude Walker: (340) 773-0295
  • Legal Counsel E. Henderson: (340) 712-2212

Leave messages letting them know you support the commutation applications for Warren Ballentine, Beaumont Gereau and Meral Smith.

A few talking points if desired, but feel free to keep it short and sweet:
• After 46 years of incarceration, they are of seriously ailing health and are extremely unlikely to re-offend… Warren alone is on 6 different types of medication after a massive heart attack a year ago.
• It is costing the state a TON of money to continue to house them and pay for medical care.

After November 20th, keep up the pressure until further notice! If Governor Mapp does not win re-election, his last day to grant commutations is on January 4th, 2019.

When you can, drop one or all of the Virgin Island 3 a note telling them about the actions you took on their behalf:

Warren Ballentine #16-047
Tallahatchie Correctional Facility
415 US Highway 49N
Tutwiler, MS 38963

Beaumont Gereau #16-001
Tallahatchie Correctional Facility
415 US Highway 49N
Tutwiler, MS 38963

Meral Smith #16-024
Tallahatchie Correctional Facility
415 US Highway 49N
Tutwiler, MS 38963

Advertisements