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San Quentin inmate podcast host among California clemencies

Ken Burns
Posted at 9:27 AM, Jan 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-14 12:27:28-05

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California’s governor has commuted the sentence of an inmate who has drawn national attention as co-host of the Pulitzer Prize-nominated podcast Ear Hustle. The program is produced inside San Quentin State Prison.

Gov. Gavin Newsom’s decision will allow 51-year-old Rahsaan “New York” Thomas to immediately go before the state parole board.

Thomas is also a regular contributor to the San Quentin News, along with publications outside prison walls. He is chairman of the Society of Professional Journalists San Quentin satellite chapter and works with several criminal justice reform groups.

Thomas was among 18 commutations, 24 pardons and five reprieves announced Thursday by Newsom.