"The person who probably was selling weed didn't have a weed problem, they had a money problem." - Henry Byous, Black entrepreneur
In 2011, Henry Byous had just come home from the hospital with his girlfriend, who had given birth to their child, a bouncing baby boy. But their celebration of a new life would soon be cut short.
“I brought him home from the hospital,” Byous tells TheGrio. The new father then remembers running outside to his car to retrieve something. That’s when he was greeted by police. He was arrested and charged for previously selling cannabis to an undercover police officer.
“That was the most hurtful feeling I ever went through,” he recalls.
For selling weed, the New Orleans native was sentenced to 7-10 years at the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola, a former slave plantation with a brutal reputation. “It was shocking,” Byous recalls. “Ya’ll got people with gun charges that’s going home tomorrow—on probation. But here it is I got a weed charge and ya’ll just like, ‘We gonna give you seven.'”
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