D.C.'s attorney general hosted a community meeting Thursday evening asking for feedback on whether notorious drug lord Rayful Edmond III should be released from prison early.
Police have said Edmond, now 54, helped fuel D.C.'s crack epidemic in the 1980s. Notorious for leading a major cocaine trafficking ring in D.C. from about 1985 to 1989, he is currently serving a life sentence without parole for federal drug distribution charges.
But prosecutors have requested early release for Edmond, saying his cooperation with police since the late 1990s led to a recommendation that his sentence be reduced.
Attorney General Karl Racine wants to know how the community feels about Edmond's possible release.
"Our job is to understand your views and to express the range of views on the re-sentencing of Mr. Edmond," he said.
Edmond was never convicted of any murders, but he was sentenced for drug charges.
He has spent time in prison helping Federal prosecutors put other drug dealers behind bars, and for that cooperation, prosecutors say a judge should release Edmond for time served.
Ward 5 ANC Commissioner Robert Brannum disagrees.
"Mr. Edmond may feel he has shared the scope of his criminal enterprise to meet early release, however it must not be lost to the mind of others that communities were devastated," he said.
D.C. resident Johnathan Mack said a judge should set him free.
"The 30 years that he has served is sufficient time," he said.
Residents can offer their thoughts at two more community meetings: Saturday from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. at Martha's Table (2375 Elvans Road SE) and June 29 from 1-3 p.m. at Frank D. Reeves Center (2000 14th St. NW). The community also can share feedback via an online form, by calling 202-727-3400 to speak directly with a rep from the D.C. attorney general's office or by mailing a written statement to Office of the Attorney General, ATTN: Rayful Edmond Case, 441 4th St. NW, Suite 1100 South, Washington, D.C. 20001.
Last month, Racine went before a judge to convince him that, as D.C.'s attorney general, he should be allowed to testify at any hearing on Edmond's possible release.
His office will submit a brief to the court that reflects the community feedback by Aug. 30.
Edmond is expected to appear before a judge in October.
He still faces an additional 30 years in prison in Pennsylvania for selling drugs in prison. Prosecutors there are considering reducing that sentence.