The KUWTK star’s prison reform efforts have not gone unnoticed by someone all too familiar with the situation.
Isaac Wright Jr., whose incredible story is the basis for the new 50 Cent produced legal drama “For Life”, is praising the prison reform efforts of Kim Kardashian.
“Kudos to Kim Kardashian,” the prisoner-turned-lawyer declared. “I feel like she is doing the right thing.”
Prison reform is something Wright knows all too much about; in 1991 he was wrongly convicted of being a drug kingpin in New Jersey, and was sentenced to life.
“Even on the witness stand at trial, there were people up there and I had no clue who they were,” he later said. “I had never seen them a day in my life and they were pointing the finger at me saying that I was their boss.”
But while serving his term, he studied law and worked as a prison paralegal. As he oversaw his own appeal, he secured the release or at least reduced the sentences of more than 20 other inmates, many of whom had also been serving life sentences.
Despite managing to vacate his own kingpin conviction, several other convictions stood against him, carrying a total sentence of more than 70 years. But he fought on, until during a 1996 evidentiary hearing, while cross-examining a veteran police officer, he managed to extract a confession of police misconduct, setting off a domino-effect of cover-up revelations, falling all the way up to the county’s head prosecutor, Nicholas Bissell.
Bissell was accused of orchestrating the entire fake conviction, including having police falsify reports and dictating false witness testimony. He was convicted of dozens of felonies, including embezzlement and abuse of power, but went on the run and ultimately shot himself in the head in a Nevada motel before facing justice.
After spending seven years in prison, all charges against Wright were dropped. He continued studying law upon his release, passing the New Jersey Bar in 2008. However he wasn’t officially sworn in for another nine years until the New Jersey Bar’s Committee satisfactorily investigated his character.
Like Isaac, Kim has been studying law, and her aim too is to clear the wrongfully convicted. Following in the footsteps of her late attorney father Robert Kardashian, Kim hopes to pass the bar and become a lawyer herself, focusing on criminal justice reform. She has already helped free more than a dozen first-time nonviolent drug offenders.
But you don’t need to be a multi-millionaire reality star to make a difference.
“The common man can start screaming,” Isaac said. “First we have to be heard; and the moment we’re heard, we can start making changes.”
“For Life”, which stars Nicholas Pinnock as Aaron Wallace – the character based on Isaac — airs on Tuesdays on ABC.