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Texas Woman Exonerated in High-Profile Voter Fraud Case Vows to Expand Voting Rights Advocacy

April 1, 2024

Crystal Mason, the Texas woman whose five-year prison sentence for voter fraud was overturned by an appeals court, is doubling down on her commitment to champion voting rights. In an exclusive statement to NBC News on Friday, Mason declared her determination to intensify her efforts to promote voter engagement and combat voter suppression.

“If anything, we are ramping up now that I have been acquitted. There will be no stopping of any kind,” Mason asserted. “Stopping now would mean my story doesn’t have legs, leverage, and longevity. It’s more than a passion, I feel it’s my duty.”

Mason’s legal ordeal began in 2018 when she was sentenced to prison for casting an illegal vote in the 2016 election. She testified that she was unaware of her ineligibility to vote due to a past felony conviction for tax fraud in 2011. Despite casting a provisional ballot with assistance from a poll worker, her vote was ultimately invalidated.

The national spotlight shone on Mason’s case, culminating in the recent decision by the Second District Appeals Court to overturn her sentence. Justice Wade Birdwell, in the court’s ruling on Thursday, emphasized that doubts about Mason’s credibility and knowledge were insufficient to prove guilt.

In the aftermath of her legal battle, Mason founded “Crystal Mason The Fight,” a nonprofit dedicated to combating voter suppression and oppression faced by marginalized communities. Through this organization, she has become a vocal advocate for voter education, registration, and rights.

Expressing her post-acquittal plans, Mason revealed that over 90% of her family members are now deputized registrars actively engaged in voter outreach and education. She emphasized the importance of grassroots efforts to empower communities and ensure robust electoral participation.

During a televised interview on MSNBC, Mason urged Americans to “know your rights” and emphasized that her story should serve as a catalyst for voter empowerment, not fear. She encouraged citizens to exercise their civic duty without hesitation.

Reflecting on her newfound freedom following Thursday’s acquittal, Mason expressed overwhelming joy and relief. “It’s setting in on me as I speak now that I am actually free, I am no longer facing going to prison,” she said.

Crystal Mason’s exoneration marks a significant milestone in the ongoing fight for voting rights, inspiring advocates nationwide to redouble their efforts to safeguard democracy and ensure equal access to the ballot box.

 

Credit: NBC News

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