Every Sentence Has a Story

When you learn someone has spent decades—or longer—in prison, it’s easy to think you know them. But each one of the 13,000 people in Michigan serving life or long-term sentences continues to evolve.

Headline 2 : The Vision

Inside one of the nation’s longest-serving prison populations is living proof that extreme punishment doesn’t work. People who have served long sentences are proven to age out of criminal behavior, while continuing to cost taxpayers $38,000 a year. As long as they’re locked up, their families and communities suffer—robbed of vital connections and resources.

Let Me Tell You is a collection of first-person stories from the people most impacted by mass incarceration. We invite you to explore, challenge your perceptions and take action.


Browse a full selection of stories here.

Before Prison by August M. Williams

My name is August M. Williams, and I’m giving you, the reader, brief insight on me as a young person. I was born in a middle class homestead, and was blessed enough to experience more joyful moments than sad ones. Both of my parents were in the house until I was five...