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Brittney Griner is a "hostage," her wife says in first interview since star WNBA player was sentenced to 9 years in Russia

Exclusive: Brittney Griner's wife speaks out
Cherelle Griner on wife Brittney's prison sentence: "It feels to me as if she's a hostage" 02:33

In her first interview since her wife, Brittney Griner, was sentenced to nine years in a Russian prison for drug possession, Cherelle Griner told "CBS Mornings" co-host Gayle King that she is terrified of the WNBA star's fate. 

"It's like a movie for me. I'm like, 'In no world did I ever thought, you know, our president and a foreign nation president would be sitting down having to discuss the freedom of my wife.' And so to me, as much as everybody's telling me a different definition of what B.G. is, it feels to me as if she's a hostage," Cherelle said. 
"That must scare you," King replied. 
"It terrifies me because, I mean, when you watch movies, like, sometimes those situations don't end well. Sometimes they never get the person back," said Cherelle.

Brittney Griner's wife on WNBA star's detention in Russia 01:10

Griner, an eight-time all-star center with the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury and a two-time Olympic gold medalist, was convicted Aug. 4 after police said they found vape canisters containing cannabis oil in her luggage at Moscow's Sheremetyevo Airport.  

On Tuesday, the White House called Griner's upcoming appeal "another sham judicial proceeding," and said President Biden is telling his administration to engage with the Russian government at all levels, to bring Griner home immediately. But for Cherelle Griner the fear of never seeing her wife again is setting in. 

"I mean, this is my life and so I'm sitting there like, 'Do we get her back? Do I ever get to see my wife again?' Like, what happens here? The fact that everything's so unprecedented and everything's, like, changeable I think is a really good word. Like, I feel like every day I'm hearing something new, and so it's just kind of like, it's terrifying," Cherelle said. 

More of Gayle King's interview with Cherelle Griner will air on "CBS Mornings" on Thursday, Oct. 6.

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