Matthew Charles, who was recently released from prison as a result of drug sentencing reform, will not have to pay rent for the next five years, thanks to the intervention of reality star Kim Kardashian-West.
Charles was freed on Jan. 3 as a result of a criminal justice reform measure signed by President Donald Trump the month before. The measure, known as the First Step Act, permits justices to retroactively apply the Fair Sentencing Act, which seeks to reverse what critics have said is an unbalanced drug sentencing system.
Now all … I have to do is find the place,” Charles told the Nashville Tennesseean Wednesday.
Charles has been working to get back on his feet since his release, finding a full-time job with the nonprofit Families Against Mandatory Minimums, buying a car and staying with a friend, according to the news organization. But the one piece that had yet to come together was housing.
He said he was turned away from renting a townhome a week ago because of his criminal background and lack of credit history after being imprisoned for more than two decades, the Tennessean reported.
He told the Tennessean that he was “pretty distraught about it because it’s not allowing me to have a full second chance.”
Kardashian-West had helped to push for the reform that led to Charles’ release. And when she learned from a Tennessean story about Charles’ troubles in finding housing, she decided to step in to help, the news organization reported. She will pay his rent for the next five years.
“Kim did not do this for attention or publicity, but I had to share it because it’s to(o) good not to, and my heart is about to burst with happiness,” Charles wrote. “I wish you to rejoice in this news with me?
Charles hopes to find a place to live by the end of the week, the news organization reported.