Welcome to
          R.I.H.D., Inc.

RIHD Youth Initiative is an honored recipient
of the 2011 City of Richmond Mayors “Lights
on After-school” and Richmond City Council ” Proclamations, working to empower youth
at-risk through academic and well-being initiatives.
  1. Managing Director
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  8. Managing Director

RIHD Sentencing Reform Campaign

Persons incarcerated/sentenced on/after January 1, 1995
 when parole was abolished for “Truth-in-sentencing.”
  Injustice #1:  Defendants in Virginia are getting trapped by harsh sentencing and denied the right to a fair appeal. Kevin Key (e.g.) was a first time offender convicted of a nonviolent drug offense. Sentencing guidelines presented by probation and parole officials recommended no more than 2 years and 2 days of incarceration.  Instead, he was sentenced to 31 years. Because Virginia abolished parole, he won’t get out until 2027. His family lives in California and can’t afford to visit him because they have drained their bank accounts for legal expenses.
Kevin Key’s case is not unique. In more than 3000** cases between 2007 and 2013**, judges provided no written reason for exceeding sentencing guidelines -- even though they are required to do so by law (Va. Code § 19.2-298.01). What’s worse, Virginia law does not allow this to form the basis of post-conviction relief or be reviewable on appeal.
The Virginia legislature has the power to change this. We need you to tell your legislators to amend the Virginia Code to address this injustice.  **Not including cases from 1995-2006 and from 2014 to Current. RIHD estimates 9,000 plus current Virginia prisoners affected.
 Injustice #2: Jury deliberations are weighty and complex, making it vital participants be able to factor in all the relevant information. Yet, for five years, juries in Virginia imposed heavy-handed sentences without knowing the state had decided to abolish its parole system.
In cases where juries inquired as to whether a defendant might one day be eligible for parole --- judges replied that, because of a legal restrictions, they weren’t allowed to answer.
Looking back, jurors who served during this period (1995 to 2000) have said they would have imposed shorter, fairer sentences, had they known parole release wasn’t being offered to prisoners, anymore.
The Virginia legislature has the power to fix this mistake by granting resentencing proceedings to the affected parties. We’ve waited long enough. The time to act is now.
RIHD estimate 500 current Virginia prisoners remain affected.

Take Action Today. The goal is 10,000 online individual signatures.  Every Virginia prisoner family and friends commit to 25 online signatures on their behalf. Emails are required for legislative response/feel free to use the same email.
You must support by signing both the
Governor Executive Order and the Legislative.

Thoughts of a prisoner:  Someday the
gates will open, and once more I’ll be free. Have I a future awaitingme? 
Will  I be accepted by others, or forced
to walk alone? 
–Luis Verduzco 

5TH Mobile Justice Tour

Mobile Justice Tour (MJT)  travel throughout the state  educating and empowering communities impacted by crime, 
and high levels of incarceration. 

At each event, we'll talk about and
take direct action in support of 
remedies to mistakes, misapplied and 
systemic thatincludes Fishback, Sentencing Guidelines, Parole Board
decisions, Geriatric and 3-Strike Release 
by our elected officials and at the General Assembly that keep our communities
locked up.
We’ll also register many of the 200,000+ individuals whose civil rights, including
the right to vote and registration.
Join us for a provocative day of speeches
and workshops and opportunities to connect with advocates and activists led by RIHD’s
Lillie Branch-Kennedy and
Richard Walker from Bridging
the Gap in Virginia.


Upcoming Public Events

2-5 PM
Lake Anne Community Center Gallery
1609-A Washington Pl
Reston, VA 20190


OAR of Fairfax; RIHD.org Mobile
Justice Tour; NAACP-PAC; Social Action Leading Together (SALT); VA
CURE; Virginia Alliance Against Mass Incarceration; and Bridging the
Gap in Virginia.org.

For more information contact:

Lillie Branch-Kennedy (Ms. K)
Text:  (804)426-4426
Email: rihd23075@aol.com