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Confessions of a Former Prosecutor

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Original price $19.99
Current price $15.99
SKU 9780827207530

by Preston Shipp with Eric Wilson

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Preston Shipp, a former Assistant Attorney General for the State of Tennessee whose work kept offenders in prison, shares his story of how teaching prisoners made him rededicate his life to juvenile justice reform.

Once an Assistant Attorney General in Tennessee, Preston Shipp found his convictions challenged after teaching criminal justice courses to inmates from the Tennessee Prison for Women. He resigned from prosecuting and continued teaching. Soon after leaving, an exceptional individual, Cyntoia Brown, joined his class. Shipp believed she deserved a chance at redemption—only to receive an opinion on a years-old murder and robbery case in which he himself had argued for a life sentence for 16-year-old Cyntoia Brown. Out of guilt and empathy, Shipp embarked on a decade-long journey to free Ms. Brown and while traveling his own path to redemption. Today, he dedicates his efforts to the Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth, which has led to more than 1,000 people receiving a new chance at life after being sentenced to life imprisonment even though they were under the age of 18. Shipp shares his views on how the American justice system is in desperate need of reform, especially for juveniles.

Endorsements for Confessions of a Former Prosecutor

"In Confessions of a Former Prosecutor, Assistant Attorney General turned reform advocate Preston Shipp opens up his personal story of discovery and redemption working in criminal justice, discovering how unjust the system truly is, and who the bad guys actually are. Through deeply personal and compelling storytelling, Shipp lays bare and challenges the power dynamics of criminal justice, and offers an insider’s perspective on the impact of punitive policies. Confessions acts as a personal confessional and sheds light on the human cost of a broken system, but it also offers tangible pathways toward meaningful reform. A must-read for policymakers, advocates, and anyone passionate about social justice, Shipp’s book is a beacon of hope in the fight for a better tomorrow. Engaging, informative, and ultimately inspiring, this book is poised to spark crucial conversations and drive positive change in the pursuit of justice for all."
Rabia Chaudry, attorney, advocate, and author of Adnan’s Story and executive producer of the HBO documentary series The Case Against Adnan Syed

“I was in prison and you visited me,” Jesus said. Preston Shipp has accepted the invitation and experienced the transforming power of Christ behind bars. I’m grateful for the ways he is bearing witness in these pages."
Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, author of Reconstructing the Gospel

"Preston Shipp preaches what he practices. His heartfelt work and life are inspiring and can help heal the deepest wounds this world suffers from. He believes in forgiveness and the miraculous work of love."
Becca Stevens, founder and President of Thistle Farms.

"Preston Shipp invites us to join him in his 'ongoing conversion' journey—not as bystanders but as those who are open to challenge and change. Shipp’s journey pushes us to abandon the “luxury of distance” and practice persistent proximity with those who are now or have been caged and criminalized. Through Preston’s own story, we are prodded and inspired to reimagine justice and healing, redefine criminal legal systems and processes, and embody what Dr. King called 'a radical revolution of values,' a seismic shift in who and how we are, both individually and collectively."
Janet Wolf, pastor and community organizer focusing on transformative justice.

"If you prefer clichéd American conversion stories, you might look elsewhere. But if you’re interested in an honest and unflinching chronicle of God’s dogged and demanding work on a life, this is your book. For here Preston Shipp recounts a conversion that disrupted his well-engineered career path, called him to learn the new language of restorative justice, invited him to see and hear those whom society exiles and silences, and has inspired an often-unappreciated prophetic witness to our church and the world. Be prepared for this book to challenge your life and discipleship."
Richard Goode, Professor of History at Lipscomb University and founder of the Lipscomb Initiative for Education (LIFE) Program