Back in 1975, Otis Johnson was sentenced to 44 years in prison for the attempted murder of a police officer. He was just 25-years-old.
More than four decades later and at 69 years of age, Johnson is a free man.
But even free men have a price to pay: Johnson has had to catch up with and adapt to 44 years of advances, developments and changes in New York City, the city that never sleeps.
After his release in August 2014, Al-Jazeera has documented Johnson’s life as he readjusts to a life that he could have never imagined behind bars.
Johnson, who used to pay 25 cents to make a call on a payphone, is experiencing all new types of technology, including cellphones, moving billboards and Bluetooth headsets.
According to the article, Johnson’s situation is very rare: Just 3,900 inmates were released from federal prisons after serving 20 years or more, less than .7 percent of all state prisoners released that year.
The video highlights an important fact argued by President Barack Obama: The nation needs Legislation reform to create reintegration programs to help released prisoners adjust to civilian life and avoid recidivism.
“It’s not too late,” Obama said in an interview with Al-Jazeera. “There are people who have gone through tough times, they’ve made mistakes, but with a little bit of help, they can get on the right path.”
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