News Release

NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo Grants Commutations in Two Cases Submitted through NACDL/FAMM State Clemency Project

Washington, DC (Dec. 24, 2020) – New York Governor Andrew Cuomo granted 14 pardons and seven commutations today. Two commutations were granted to individuals who petitioned the governor through the NACDL/FAMM State Clemency Project – Theresa Debo and Joseph Norman.

The Project issued the following statement: "We congratulate Mr. Norman, Ms. Debo, and their counsel, and all of the recipients of clemency. And we express the deepest appreciation to countless volunteers who have worked through the NACDL/FAMM State Clemency Project to secure commutations for deserving individuals. The Project also sincerely regrets that, out of so many deserving applicants, this is the best that Governor Cuomo could do. We need to see more action from the governor."

The NACDL/FAMM State Clemency Project, which is supported by the NACDL Foundation for Criminal Justice (NFCJ), was announced in August of 2017 to recruit, train, and provide resource support to pro bono attorneys to assist state prisoners to submit petitions to have their sentences commuted. Indeed, in 2017, Governor Andrew Cuomo, who called upon the bar to volunteer to help bring worthy cases to his attention, announced the partnership with the NACDL/FAMM State Clemency Project. More than three years later, of more than 120 petitions submitted through the Project, these are only the third and fourth commutations granted to Project applicants.


Ivan Dominguez, NACDL Senior Director of Public Affairs and Communications, (202) 465-7662 or

The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers is the preeminent organization advancing the mission of the criminal defense bar to ensure justice and due process for persons accused of crime or wrongdoing. A professional bar association founded in 1958, NACDL's many thousands of direct members in 28 countries – and 90 state, provincial and local affiliate organizations totaling up to 40,000 attorneys – include private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, military defense counsel, law professors and judges committed to preserving fairness and promoting a rational and humane criminal justice system.

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