Appeals court judges and the Supreme Court rejected her appeals. "I urge the president to do the same for other federal prisoners serving extreme sentences that don't match the offenses, while reforming our draconian sentencing laws that produce these senseless punishments".
As clemency petitions work their way through the system, the president routinely denies the "vast majority" of requests, a White House official said. The reasons are unclear.
Johnson was convicted in 1996 for "leading a multi-million-dollar drug ring that dealt in tons of cocaine from 1991-1994", according to the Tennessean. She was convicted on charges of attempted possession of drugs and money-laundering in Tennessee.
Johnson has served nearly 22 years in prison as part of a life sentence for a non-violent drug offense. "She's a model inmate".
Her case has been described as an extreme example of harsh, mandatory-minimum drug sentencing that emerged in the 1980s and 1990s.More news: GOP Leader McConnell Cancels Most of Senate's August Recess
Democrats and Trump critics have warned that the president might be sending a message to his former aides and associates caught up in the special counsel's Russian Federation investigation or the probe of former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen by the Manhattan U.S. attorney's office.
"This country's addiction to mass incarceration has devastated millions of families like Alice's, with emotional and economic consequences that can last generations", she added.More news: Elon Musk: Tesla’s faced the ‘most-excruciating, hellish’ last few months
Johnson's case was first noticed by Kardashian West when she saw a video about it on social media and chose to pay for a new legal team to fight the sentence.
Following the commutation, Johnson told MSNBC that this clemency is "saving her life". "I'll do whatever it takes to get her out".
Johnson is the second person commuted by Trump since taking office.
The boxer's pardon had been championed by actor Sylvester Stallone, who Trump said had brought the story to his attention in a phone call.
"Trump granted a commutation to Alice Marie Johnson, a 63-year-old great-grandmother who has served nearly 22 years in Federal prison for a first-time criminal offense", read a statement from the White House.More news: White House: 'Vast Majority' Of Eagles Have 'Abandoned Their Fans'
They also acknowledged that her warden, case manager, and vocational training instructor had all written glowing letters in support of her clemency. "It's time to go home!'" Catina Johnson told CNN in a phone call on her way to pick up her mother.