Drugs

Meet the Man Sentenced to 13 Years for Two Marijuana Joints

Bernard Noble shares his heartbreaking story—one that is all too common thanks to the war on drugs.

Photo Credit: oneword / Shutterstock

This podcast was originally published on Drugs and Stuff, a podcast from the Drug Policy Alliance.

We were lucky to talk with Bernard Noble, who recently came home after serving more than 7 years in a Louisiana prison. Bernard was finally granted parole after being sentenced to 13 years for allegedly possessing two joints of marijuana. You’ll hear all about this grave injustice directly from the man whose case drew national attention as an example of extremely harsh drug sentences in the United States, and how an entire family is tragically affected when a parent is sent to prison.

We were also joined by DPA's Anthony Papa, who became the first person in New York State history to receive both clemency (from Gov. George Pataki 1997) and a pardon (from Gov. Andrew Cuomo 2016) after he was unfairly sentenced to 15-to-life for a first-time, nonviolent drug offense under New York’s draconian Rockefeller Drug Laws. This discussion between two men who served a number of years behind bars because of the war on drugs is powerful and, at times, heart-breaking.

If you want to support Bernard, you can give here: https://www.youcaring.com/bernardnoble-1182699

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Anthony Papa is the manager of media and artists relations for the Drug Policy Alliance. He is the author of This Side of Freedom: Life After Clemency.