The Catholic University of America


Tim Tyler's Thank You Tour stops at the Columbus School of Law 

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Tim's Commutation of Sentence signed
by Barack Obama

Professor Ogilvy taking Tim
on a tour of CUA Law.

Tim looking at the cards that he sent as Thank Yous to the program.

On September 17, 2018, the Columbus School of Law had an unexpected visitor. It was Tim Tyler stopping by to thank in person Professor Sandy Ogilvy and the members of the Innocence Project Clinic & Clemency Project for the successful commutation of his sentence on August 30, 2016, by President Obama. Two years later, Tim was released from the half-way house he was staying at on August 30, 2018, and has begun his Thank You tour.

"It was wonderful finally to meet Tim in person", said Professor Ogilvy. "I regret that Janette Richardson (’15) and Melissa Saldivar (’15), the two former students who were most responsible for working with Tim to put together his successful application for commutation of sentence, were unable to be here. However, Tim said that he will be back in DC in November and hopes to see Melissa then, and he is planning a trip to Florida, where his mother lives, and will arrange to visit Janette, who is working as a public defender in Pensacola, Florida. Melissa is an associate attorney at Berry Appleman & Leiden, LLP in Arlington, VA, where she focuses on employment-based immigration matters."

Tim is traveling from Las Vegas, where he was living with his sister, Carrie, after his release from a halfway house, to Maine with stops along the way to thank old friends and new friends who have supported him during his 26 years of incarceration and since his release. He was in DC to stop by the law school to retrieve his Commutation of Sentence signed by Barack Obama, having entrusted the document to the Clinic until his release and to personally thank Professor Ogilvy for the work of the Clinic’s students on his behalf. He also planned a stop at the offices of Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM) to thank the staff there for their support of him. FAMM had recommended Tim’s case to the Clinic in September 2013. On Thursday, Tim will celebrate his 50th birthday, his first birthday outside of a federal prison since he went to prison just before his 24th birthday.

The Innocence Project Clinic & Clemency Project continues to investigate cases of actual innocence under its affiliation with the Mid-Atlantic Innocence Project. The Clinic also recently filed a second federal commutation application on behalf of a deserving client whose first application was denied by the Obama administration. Since the end of the Obama commutation initiative, the Clinic has devoted much of its resources to representing juvenile lifers in Maryland in connection with their parole applications. In early 2017, The Clinic founded the Maryland Juvenile Lifer Parole Representation Project (MJLPRP) along with Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM), The Maryland ACLU, the Maryland Restorative Justice Initiative, and area law school clinics including the University of Baltimore Law School Juvenile Justice Project, the American University Washington College of Law Criminal Justice Clinic, and lawyers from major DC and Maryland law firms. The Project has trained nearly fifty lawyers and found representation for over 25 juvenile lifers.

For more about Tim Tyler's release here is a link to an article by Rachel Crosby -