Alvin Kennard, a Black man from Alabama who has been in prison for 36 years serving a life sentence without parole for stealing $50.75 from a bakery, is set to be released from prison after being resentenced to time served.
Kennard was only 22-years old when he was convicted of first-degree robbery in 1983. He was sentenced to life imprisonment under Alabama’s Habitual Felony Offender Act, also known as the “three strikes law,” as he had been previously convicted of burglary and grand larceny.
However, in 2013, the sentencing guidelines in Alabama were changed. Under the new guidelines, Kennard would just have received a 20-year maximum sentence.
Kennard, who is now 58-years old, told the court before his resentencing, “I just want to say I’m sorry for what I did… I take responsibility for what I did in the past. I want the opportunity to get it right.”
His attorney, Carla Crowder, said that Kennard was “overwhelmed” by the resentencing.
“What’s extraordinary about Mr. Kennard is that even when he thought he was going to be in prison for the rest of his life, he really turned his life around,” she said. “He is overwhelmed at this opportunity, but has remained close with his family, so he has incredible support.”
Kennard’s release from prison will be processed out by the Alabama Department of Corrections. It’s unclear what the specific date, but he would be returning home “within a few days.”