Meet Tyra Patterson
Tyra Patterson got a new lease on life Dec. 25, 2017. On that day, she was released from prison after she spent almost 23 years behind bars — all for a crime she did not commit.
Tyra’s joyful and vibrant spirit changed lives inside prison, where she worked as a mentor in several programs for women. Tyra learned to read in prison, so she paid it forward: She taught other women in her prison to read. She completed more than 200 educational programs while in prison, jumping on every opportunity that came her way.
Today, Tyra’s goal is to help young people avoid pathways to prison and to help people trapped by the criminal justice system. She travels to high schools, colleges, law schools, prisons, organizations and clubs to talk about her case and what she’s learned about life, redemption and justice. See one example below:
Tyra also works full time at OJPC as a paralegal. Now, she’s able to help others navigate the difficult intricacies of the criminal justice system — just as OJPC did for her.
Tyra spent 22 years in prison for crimes she did not commit
The “I Am Tyra Patterson” movement — led by a diverse array of prosecutors, experts, advocates, as well as six jurors who convicted Tyra — brought national attention to Tyra’s case and cause.
Watch the video, “I Am Tyra Patterson,” below:
Despite the sometimes bleak situations, Tyra said she never lost hope that she would eventually be released from prison.
“I knew that this day would come for my freedom,” she told Fox 45 reporter Kelly May in Nov. 2017, just after she learned that she would be released on parole.
Click here to learn more about Tyra’s case and how OJPC helped her get out of prison.
In addition to working with young people and people affected by the criminal justice system, Tyra’s also petitioning for a pardon by Gov. John Kasich. Tyra is incredibly grateful for her freedom and the ability to live outside of a prison cell. However, Tyra is still a convicted murderer in the eyes of the law. Clearing her name is incredibly important, but Tyra does not want to go back to court — she says she wants to spare the victims’ families any further heartbreak or difficulty.
Want to connect with Tyra?
“Like” her Facebook page.
You can also make a donation to honor Tyra’s long fight and help OJPC give more clients a second chance.