66-year-old Illinois man is fighting his life sentence over possession of 1/4 of a tablespoon of cocaine
Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune/TNS

CHICAGO — Michael Lightfoot is 66 years old. He survived prostate cancer. He has grandchildren and great-grandchildren who love him. He has health problems and doesn’t think he has that much time left. But without a pardon from the governor, Lightfoot will die in prison because he was caught with 6 grams of crack cocaine in his home. Lightfoot received a mandatory life sentence in 2005 on the low-level drug charge under Illinois’ habitual offender law, also called the three strikes law, which allows prosecutors to seek a life sentence when someone is convicted of their third serious felony. In...