Brittney Griner Sends Desperate Independence Day Plea To Joe Biden

Brittney Griner remains in Russian custody. The New York Times reported that the professional basketball player was arrested in February, a week before Russia invaded Ukraine. Griner was detained after Russians found marijuana vape cartridges in Griner’s luggage during a security check. The WNBA player was arrested, with her sentence extended multiple times. Griner’s situation worsened in late June when the Russians extended her detention for a fourth time. The Times reported that Griner started a trial in a Russian court on July 1.

The United States government is trying to help Griner, but her wife doesn’t know the details. In an interview on the radio show “Keepin’ It Real with Rev. Al Sharpton,” Cherelle Griner said, “I’m definitely getting a lot of compelling statements about this [Griner] is a priority and that they’re doing everything they can and it’s already at the top of the chain of command. The U.S. State Department made an announcement about the WNBA basketball player in May. A spokesman said, “The Department of State has determined that the Russian Federation wrongfully arrested U.S. citizen Brittney Griner,” per People. The State Department promised the government would “continue to provide appropriate support to Ms. Griner and her family.” But now Griner is making an appeal to President Joe Biden.

Brittney Griner sends a handwritten letter to Joe Biden as his wife takes the floor

As America celebrated Independence Day on July 4th, ESPN reported that Brittney Griner sent a handwritten letter to President Joe Biden asking for her freedom. ESPN reporter TJ Quinn shared excerpts from Griner’s letter to the President on Twitter. Quinn tweeted that Griner wrote that she was “scared that I might be here forever,” adding, “Please don’t forget me and the other American inmates.” Griner continued, “Please do everything you can to follow us.” to bring home. I voted for the first time in 2020 and I voted for you. I believe in you. I have so much good left to do with my freedom that you can help restore it. But back in America, Griner’s family loses hope in State Department efforts to free them.

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On July 5, the WNBA player’s wife, Cherelle Griner, told CBS Mornings that she “will not be silent anymore.” Her frustration was evident when she spoke to Gayle King. “Initially I was told… ‘We’re going to try to get this over with [the] Scenes.” And: ‘Let’s not increase their value.’ And: ‘Keep calm.’ And I did,” she explained. “And with all due respect, we’re over 140 days old at this point. That does not work.”

Griner’s attorney, Alexander Boykov, told the New York Times that the WNBA player could face 10 years in prison if convicted.