Monday, SPL Center reported on a touching story of a woman who married her fiance in prison. But, something threatens to keep them apart when he’s released.
It is not everyday one reads a prison love story that touches the heart. But, there is one on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s (SPLC) website that really induces tears. This is the story of a young lady who married her fiance in prison. This prison wedding had no fanfare whatsoever. And, there was no family present.
But, the question is: How will they live together happily after he is released from prison?
Georgia Takes Prison Couple Through Ringer for Prison Wedding
Sabrina went through a lot of trouble before prison authorities agreed she could wed her fiance through prison bars in the Georgia penitentiary where he was incarcerated. Carl, her fiance, was detained at the Stewart Detention Center in Lumpkin, Georgia.
This prison houses thousands of illegal and undocumented immigrants under the authority of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
Carl is not new in the United States. He had been in the US for over 10 years. The Georgia prisoner had a stable job. But, he is an undocumented immigrant who got caught up in President Trump’s new immigration laws. He was a good friend of Sabrina, and treated her little son, Shaun, as his own son.
Both had been planning for their wedding before Winston was arrested by the authorities for:
- Driving a car with non-functional tail lights
- Operating a motor vehicle without a valid driver’s license
If things work against him, Carl may be deported.
Prison Couple Gets Married in Georgia Prison
Georgia prison officials would not marry them unless both parties were present for the wedding. So, Sabrina shuttled from Tennessee to Georgia to obtain legal papers that would allow them to get married. Eventually the wedding day came.
No family or wedding planner or bridesmaids or friends were around to witness the prison marriage ceremony. It took place in the Stewart Detention Center. But, ICE officials and Erica Thomas, representing the SPLC’s Southeast Immigrant Freedom Initiative (SIFI), and some prison guards were there.
Thomas offered to be Sabrina’s maid of honor the day before the actual wedding. The prison bride agreed. Together, with little Shaun, the three traveled with a pastor. Then, they all made their way to Stewart Detention Center.
The maid of honor bought a few flowers from a roadside store. She also picked up fresh ones growing alongside the road to add a little color to the prison wedding event.
Finally… Woman Married Her Fiance in Prison
After they were cleared by prison security, they were escorted to the prison visitation room. There, Carl, the prison groom, could only put his hand through a slot to exchange wedding rings when Sabrina married her fiance in prison.
The officiating pastor had to shout out the marriage vows and attendant prayers. This is because other refugees and asylum seekers were meeting with their visitors at the same time. Through the opening, the couple exchanged wedding rings and Carl was only able to kiss Sabrina’s fingers to seal the prison marriage ceremony.
The whole affair lasted for about 10 minutes. But, Sabrina had finally married her fiance in prison.
This newly married prison couple smiled at each other through the dividing glass before Sabrina and her prison wedding party were escorted out. To Sabrian, the wedding was “a beautiful moment under such ugly circumstances.” she thanked everyone, especially Thomas of SIFI for her help.
Carl was later released later on bond. It is hoped that Sabrina would apply for legal status for her husband, since they are now legally married.
“…within the walls of Stewart, there is so much sadness and hardship. Outside those walls, there is the additional, immeasurable grief and longing felt by the loved ones of the detained men.
Working in Lumpkin, it becomes hard to see the happiness through the misery. The moments when that happiness has shone through have been few and far between.
That Friday morning was one of those beautiful moments.”
Prison Visitor Transportation in Georgia
Prison Rideshare Network has teamed up with Grace Walkers Center Transportation. This was done to help inmate’s loved ones find rides to prisons in Georgia. Prison Transportation to Georgia facilities are already being planned.
If you’re interested in finding rides to Georgia prisons, we are here to help. Join our network and we’ll keep you informed on any upcoming Georgia prison trips. Click the link below to join our network now.