WASHINGTON, D.C. — Pennsylvania U.S. Senator John Fetterman on Monday announced that Dennis “Freedom” Horton would be his guest to Tuesday’s State of the Union Address in Washington, D.C.

Dennis and his brother, Lee Horton, were incarcerated for nearly 28 years for a crime they did not commit. Following years of advocacy, then-Lt. Governor Fetterman led the charge as chair of Pennsylvania’s Board of Pardons to commute their sentences to time served. In February of 2021, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf commuted the Hortons’ life sentences and ordered their release from prison.

“It’s an honor and a privilege to welcome Dennis to Washington to attend the State of the Union address with me,” said Senator Fetterman. “The incarceration of Dennis and Lee for a crime they did not commit is a stark reminder of the work we need to do to make our criminal justice system more equitable and fair. I fought for their commutations and countless others as chair of the Pennsylvania Board of Pardons, and as your U.S. Senator I will continue to push for second chances for those who deserve them. We should not be a society about vengeance, we should be a society about redemption.”

From left to right: Dennis “Freedom” Horton, Sen. Fetterman, and Lee Horton.

Following their release from prison, Dennis and Lee joined Fetterman’s U.S. Senate campaign as field organizers in Philadelphia. Their relentless efforts contributed to Fetterman’s primary election win in Philadelphia and his massive statewide margin in the general election.