In 1986, Moses Summerville entered a Taco Bell unarmed and made an unfounded threat in an attempt to obtain money. In response, an employee defended the restaurant by throwing hot grease at Mr. Summerville, causing him to leave the premises and seek medical attention and police intervention. As a result of his actions, he was sentenced to life in prison.
During his 36-year incarceration, Mr. Summerville actively engaged in various rehabilitation programs, earning certificates and striving to improve himself while addressing his psychosis.
Redemption Earned, upon hearing Mr. Summerville’s story, came to believe that he had served enough time for the crime, especially considering he was the only one injured, and that he no longer posed a threat to public safety. As a result, they decided to represent him before the Parole Board.
On May 16th, 2023, the Alabama Board of Pardons and Paroles reviewed Moses Summerville’s case and granted him a second chance at freedom. Nearly a month later, on the day before Independence Day, Mr. Summerville finally breathed the air of freedom after almost 37 years of imprisonment.
Upon his release from Bullock Correctional Facility, Mr. Summerville was met by Reverend Mayer, a retired Episcopalian priest and volunteer for Redemption Earned, along with her neighbor, Taiwan Ferguson. Rev. Mayer described the day as long but ultimately fulfilling.
Initially, Mr. Summerville seemed unsure if he was truly free, even suspecting that he might be transferred to another prison. However, he was delighted to learn that he was heading to Montgomery, where Faith Crusade, a Reentry Program run by Chaplain Curtis Browder and his family, had arranged for him to stay in a trailer with a choice of rooms, access to a stable full of horses, and seventy-five dollars waiting for him.
Leading up to his release, Redemption Earned had coordinated with Faith Crusade to furnish Mr. Summerville’s new living space, providing him with a bed frame, mattress, and other essentials to facilitate his transition.
Rev. Mayer spoke highly of Mr. Summerville, describing him as a courteous, enthusiastic, and appreciative individual who cherishes his family and finds joy in life’s simple pleasures.
The staff at Redemption Earned believes that Mr. Summerville’s story exemplifies the collaborative efforts of not only their team but also volunteers, community partners, and donors in the pursuit of a better Alabama. They advocate for justice, restoration, rehabilitation, and mercy, especially for those who are often overlooked and underserved. The last. The lost.
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