Justice For Vern Braswell

Vern Braswell from Memphis, Tennessee has been incarcerated for murder since 2004.

A prosecutor wrongfully convicted this young successful Black activist, educator, talent scout, and pillar of the community...

  ...even though they had DNA and other evidence that Vern was innocent!

The prosecutor has a long deep hatred for adult-oriented businesses and became obsessed with taking down this young successful Black man, because Vern visited those types of establishments.

In September of 2020 Vern was diagnosed with cancer in prison. Although he has only 3 and a half years left on his sentence and is eligible for work release, Vern was denied a medical release to get cancer radiation treatments in a sterile environment on monitored home confinement.

Vern could very likely catch COVID and die before he completes his sentence.





Twitter:  @J4VernBraswell  

Instagram: @JusticeForVernBraswell


Email: J4VernBraswell@afmfm.org  

Vern is known for his big heart and his big smile that often comes after one of his practical jokes.

While incarcerated Vern has...

      • .. earned a Doctorate Degree in Counseling 
      • ... helped scores of young men earn their G.E.D. 
      • ... began developing prison reform proposals that will increase inmates' success upon release and would save the State millions of dollars.

Before having his life ripped to shreds by prosecutors,

Vern was a member of...

      • Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Incorporated,
      • Black Scholars Unlimited (college), 
      • Kappa Delta Pi Professional Educational Honor Society 
      • The Prince Hall Masons 
      • Metropolitan Baptist Church 
      • Ruff Ryders of Memphis,  Motorcycle and Charity Club (founder and first president)

Out of his love for community service and activism,

prior to incarceration

Vern was also...

  • ... the creator & operator of Hotels & Homes, a network to provide temporary and permanent housing for homeless students and their families 
  • ... the creator of disaster relief fundraisers for victims of natural disasters in Tennessee
  • ... the creator of fallen officer fundraising events
  • ... the creator of murder victims' family fundraising events
  • ...  the founder and first president of Ruff Ryders Memphis Motorcycle Club that focused on community service and uplift
  • ... an educational activist in poor rural and at risk urban communities
  • ... the creator and sponsor of a Black college students for Black elementary students tutoring and mentoring program
  • ... a Saturday School tutoring volunteer
  • ...the sponsor of a Saturday School meals for students program
  • ... a state level volunteer working as a statewide prison ministry coordinator and policymaker
  • ... a local prison ministry weekly volunteer and activist
  • ... an educator who worked his way up from a teacher assistant to assistant principal
  • ... a college graduate with a bachelor in education and a master in leadership & policy studies (administration & supervision)
  • ... a licensed Tennessee educator
  • ... a licensed Tennessee administrator
  • ... a sponsor and facilitator of yearly national field trips for both poor rural and poor city school students
  • ... a co-creator of a national grants program to reward computer supplies to hundreds of schools in America that were committing to recycling.

CLICK HERE: To watch video clips of supporters discussing Vern's years of community service and philanthropy in West Tennessee.


"Cancer for a Black Man

On the streets of Tennessee during a pandemic, 

Can be a critical situation...

Cancer for any Black Man

In the prisons of Tennessee during a pandemic, 

Can be a death sentence..."


SIGNING OUR EMAIL to the Gov of Tennessee in support of a clemency to commute Vern's remaining 3 years to home confinement because of his CANCER & COVID-19.

It takes less than 30 seconds.





Media coverage of the perils of Vern's cancer diagnosis in prison.


In July of 2020 following a George Floyd march and moment of reflection by the Memphis legal community, evidence that had been missing from Vern's official court records for 15 years, resurfaced with a letter of apology.

The letter included allegations that the evidence was stolen from Vern's court records to prevent appellate court judges from viewing the documents.

A forensic document expert determined that the resurfaced evidence were actual original documents.

Read the bombshell letter of apology and some of the actual original documents that were stolen from the court files right before Vern's character based appeal.


More details on the contents of the letter of apology and forensic evidence that the documents were stolen from the official secured trial court records! READ


NBC affiliate

"Former Memphis educator Vern Braswell hopes resurfaced character letters lead to prison release"

NBC affiliate VIDEO

ABC affiliate
"New evidence in Vern Braswell case?  Family of former school assistant principal convicted of killing wife says new evidence proves his innocence"

Daily Memphian
New evidence surfaces in 16-year-old murder case

The Commercial Appeal
Missing 15 years, character letters resurface in Vern Braswell murder case


In April of 2011, a sealed envelope of withheld evidence from the Braswell case was found in the DA's files, bearing the prosecutor's initials, and a note saying, "DO NOT SHOW TO THE DEFENSE"...

However, the sealed envelope of withheld evidence conveniently disappeared before Vern's lawyers could view its contents.

The Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals said,

"The olfactory perception of the sealed manilla envelope is not pleasant."

- quote from Vern Braswell v. State of Toennessee (2018)

by Judge John Everette Willams from the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals.

CLICK HERE for extensive media coverage of prosecutors claiming the withheld evidence mysteriously vanished from their files

Harvard Law School references Vern's case and the sealed envelope of withheld evidence when they rate his prosecutor as the worst in America. READ

The New York Times talks about the sealed envelope of  withheld evidence in Vern's case as they profile another case of prosecutorial misconduct by Vern's prosecutor. READ


Vern was charged with 1st degree murder in the death of his wife Shelia. Vern was convicted of 2nd degree murder following a trial plagued by withheld and vanishing evidence of innocence.

Prosecutors claimed the Braswells got into a physical fight in the middle of the night while they were naked that ended in Shelia's death...

... even though his wife Shelia had:

• very old acrylic nails that were all intact and none broken off,

• multiple huge decorative body piercings in intimate locations that were undisturbed and had no trauma,

• no defensive marks, no fight marks, no scratches, and no bruises anywhere on her body,

• and a police scene investigator who declared, “there did not appear to be any noticeable injuries to her … that you would typically see in someone who's been murdered”...

• Vern also had no marks, scratches, bruises, or evidence of a fight anywhere on his body

CLICK HERE for details on additional evidence of innocence that was withheld by prosecutors and other acts of prosecutorial misconduct.

CLICK HERE to read in-depth and heartbreaking articles about Vern's case detailing the systemic racial inequalities and corruption in the Braswell case.


If Tennessee would have had Black Defendants Matters policies in place which guarantee...

 - Fair and Equitable Treatment for ALL

 - Uncompromising Transparency, and

 - Uncompromising Accountabiliy 

throughout the ENTIRE criminal justice system,

...Braswell would not have been repeatedly violated by the Tennessee Criminal Court System.

Subscribe to be the first to receive...

 a notification when we publish our soul stirring articles listed below as well as new developments in the Braswell case.

As You Read These Heartbreaking Articles

Covering the Braswell Case,

You'll Discover There are

Two Justice Systems.

One Black,

One White,

Very Unequal.

Why? Why? Why?

- Why did some of Vern Braswell's Best Evidence Vanish and
White Judges Let it Slide... 

Tennessee's Catch Me If You (In) Just-Us System 

- Vern Braswell was prosecuted by an all White team of prosecutors. His attorney finds a sealed envelope of withheld evidence in the prosecutor's "secured" files that says DO NOT SHOW TO THE DEFENSE.  Then the envelope mysteriously disappears. An all White panel of Judges say Braswell's attorney should have done a better job of catching the all White team of prosecutors redhanded before the evidence they initially concealed eventually vanished. Don‘t believe us? Read It and see for yourself!

TN White Courts Version of Black Justice (Press Version w/ Citations) 

Read how justice is dealt to Vern Braswell by all White prosecutors and judges in Tennessee when there is zero accountability. Citations included because you wouldn’t believe it if we didn‘t include them! 

(Amplifiers) TN White Courts Version of Black Justice

This version is for amplifiers. You can quote, share, print. post. or tweet this version when you amplify the systemic racial injustice of the Braswell case using your platform. 

Twenty TweetAble Takes From the Vern Braswell case  

 - We are providing amplifiers with a bag of 20 bite sized Ready-to-Tweet nuggets from the Braswell case for your posting pleasure (hashtags included). 

Please post or tweet one-a-day to keep attention on the systemic injustice in the Braswell case. COMING SOON



Vern Braswell Verzuz the White Cases

Round One: Lots of Errors

- Read how the all White TN Criminal Appeals Court treated a White erotic asphyxia defendant verzuz a Black erotic asphyxia defendant with way more trial errors and mistakes. Guess which one got the relief. 


Vern Braswell Verzuz the White Cases

Round Two: Lawyer Errors

 - This time the all White TN Appeals Court gave a White defendant (who stabbed their spouse in the back) relief because their trial attorney made a mistake, but the Court refused to help Vern Braswell, who's attorney made the identical mistake plus many more mistakes

 Vern Braswell Verzuz the White Cases

Round Three: Jury Deliberations   

 - The same TN Court gave relief to a White defendant based on how the jury deliberated, but refused to give relief to Vern Braswell even though his jury deliberated exactly the same way and indicated he was probably more innocent than the White defendant. 

Vern Braswell Verzuz White Cases

Round 4 Hiding Evidence of Innocence, (Bonus Round) 

 - Braswell's White prosecutor withheld evidence of innocence in the case of a White defendant and eventually gave the evidence to the White defendant's lawyer. When the same prosecutor withheld evidence in the Vern Braswell's case, she refused to give it to his lawyers. The all White Judges and the TN lawyer board refused to do anything about the prosecutor in the Black case.  

Vern Braswell Verzuz White Cases

Round 5 Witness Intimidation 

 - Braswell's same prosecutor intimidated a Black expert witness to prevent him from testifying in a White defendant's case, the all White judges gave the defendant relief (in part) because of the prosecutor's actions. The same issue was egregious in the Braswell case but the courts refused to give Braswell relief.

Evidence of Innocence?

NO! Says the TN All-White Judges' Club.

 - Take a look at all of the newly discovered evidence of innocence that was presented before the Tennessee all White Judges Club and why it didn't make sense when they said a witness with first hand testimony did not matter for Vern Braswell. 

Harvard Law:

Braswell's Prosecutor is the Worst of the Worst Prosecutors

 - Harvard Law School uses Vern Braswell's case as justification for why his prosecutor, Amy Weirich, is one of the worst prosecutors in America when it comes to misconduct in the publication by The Fair Punishment Project. 


Vern Braswell's Original Trial Lawyer

Why was Vern Braswell's original trial attorney disbarred? Why did one of the Judges find him credible in Braswell's case right after she caught him testifying "inconsistent with the facts"? 

ATTENTION: Investigative Reporters, Scholars, and Sleuths. Can You Solve the Sealed Envelope Case?

 - We supply the documents, you supply the wits. Do you have what it takes to solve the case of the missing sealed envelope bearing the prosecutor's initials? Who lied and what did they hide?

The Colin Kaepernick of the Criminal Justice System: Senior Judge Gilbert S. Merritt

 - “This set of falsehoods is typical of the conduct of the Memphis D.A’s office during this period.” 

- Senior Justice Gilbert S. Merritt from Owens v. Guida 549 F.3d 399, 425 (6lh Cir.2008), 

He is honest and courageous enough to point out that the Memphis prosecutors were typical liars. So why did a judge with arguably the greatest amount of integrity in the entire criminal justice system get passed over for a seat at the law of the land? Sometimes sacrifice, integrity, and being ostracized go hand in hand. 

My Son Vern Has Been Diagnosed With Cancer: 3 Ways to Help

Cancer for a Black Man
On the streets of Tennessee during a pandemic, Can be a critical situation...
Cancer for any Black Man
In the prisons of Tennessee during a pandemic, Can be a death sentence...

Why Vern's Cancer Diagnosis is so Devastating 

Vern has earned a doctorate degree while incarcerated  and wants to use his degrees to develop prison reform proposals.

 How to Slave Whip a Black Community Activist 

 - Vern Braswell dedicated over 15 years of extensive community service in both Black and White communities. Dozens of Memphians wrote in and made the courts aware of this until all of the documentation  and evidence of this totally vanished from the official court records. This head shaking article about abandonment, betrayal, and corruption will have you as angry as a police brutality video.

The Court of All White Judges' that Silently Supervised the Braswell Injustice. 

Vern Braswell lets us look through his eyes as he appeared before all White judges on his journey through the Tennessee Criminal (In)"Just Us" System, including when he first realized that in the eyes of the courts he was just a n*gg*r. COMING SOON

Her Hate & The Sex Business Hit Squad 

 - Why did Braswell's prosecutor take a "win at any cost" attitude in the Braswell case? Perhaps going back to her big loss when she was a "lieutenant" on the sex business hit sqaud will provide some insight into the source of her deep seeded hate hate.  COMING SOON

Vern Braswell's Clemency Petition  

We take a look at Vern Braswell's Clemency Application and the reasonswhy he's petitioning the Governor for a commutation. COMING SOON

Vern Braswell's Genesis Joseph Approach to Prison Reform 

Vern Braswell draws on his education, work history, and lessons learned from his incarceration to develop a prison reform approach which will solve most of long standing ills of incarceration and recidivism. Will the State of Tennessee listen to his wisdom on the subject? COMING SOON

An Interview...  

 - Vern Braswell answers our questions to provide insight and a bird's eye view of traversing the criminal justice system as a Black man. Why did he open up with the closing arguments from A Time to Kill?  COMING SOON


Please show your support for Vern being granted a Clemency release because of the injustices in his case, his cancer diagnosis, my poor health, and so he can continue working on his prison reform proposals and prison reform research. CLICK HERE TO SEND AN EMAIL to the Governor of Tennessee in support of a clemency request to commute Vern's remaining 4 1/2 year to home confinement. THE EMAIL will go to TN's Gov Lee & the Clemency Unit.

You MUST include your info at the closing of the email. God bless you.

If you want to join us in helping to get Justice For Vern please contact us and follow us at J4VernBraswell@afmfm.org 


This was composed in conjunction with Black Defendants Matter. BDM is responsible for researching and publicizing the Braswell case. Our policies will guarantee an end to brutality and racial inequalities in the criminal justice system.

Will you please help us?
Visit, follow, & contact us at: www.BlackDefendantsMatter.org

@BlackDefendants BDM@Afmfm.org