• Woman pardoned by Governor Stitt after prison release, justice reform work

    By: Naomi Keitt

    Updated:

    CLAREMORE, Okla. - A Claremore woman celebrated a pardon on Thursday signed by Governor Kevin Stitt.

    Rhonda Bear met with Stitt at her coffee shop "She Brews"  on Thursday morning where he pardoned her for a past drug conviction.

    Bear started the coffee shop as a way to help freshly incarcerated women get on a better path and make changes in their lives.

    She first met Stitt on his campaign trail where she initially explained to him the mass incarceration of women and how it affects families across the state.

    Bear sat in the front row at the governor's inauguration and is continuing to work with him on criminal justice.

    A pardon in Oklahoma represents forgiveness but does not expunge someone's criminal record. Bear is working with Senator Kevin Matthews to change that.


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