Serving Southeastern North Carolina since and an outgrowth of R. Jervay Printers established in At this event, the Certificates of Pardon, signed by Gov. Beverly Perdue, will be formally bestowed upon surviving members of the Wilmington Ten and family members of the four deceased members. This historic service is open to the public.
Martin Luther King, Jr. To reserve your advertising space Call The deadline for reservations is January 14, The process in which this case was tried was fundamentally flawed. Therefore, as Governor, I am issuing these pardons of innocence to right this longstanding wrong. Beverly Perdue, in an exclusive interview Wednesday with The Wilmington Journal, confirmed that those who were convinced that the Ten were "guilty of something" tried to stop her.
I sought the opinions and the advice of many, many people - the folks who were for pardons of innocence, may of the advocacy.
I also spoke to many of North Carolina's leading jurists, and talked to people of all persuasions, and interestingly enough, there will always be, as there are in many cases, those who think one should never rethink the outcome of a jury trial.
And I actually believe that because of what we've seen happen in North Carolina this decade, not from the '70's. Bev Perdue today signed a Pardon of Innocence for the Wilmington 10 and issued the following Black people speed hookup raleigh nc obituaries funeral home This topic evokes strong opinions from many North Carolinians as it hearkens back to a very difficult time in our state's past, a period of racial tensions and violence that represents Black people speed hookup raleigh nc obituaries funeral home dark chapter in North Carolina's history.
These cases generate a great deal of emotion from people who lived through these traumatic events.
In evaluating these petitions for clemency, it is important to separate fact from rumor and innuendo. I have decided to grant these pardons because the more facts I have learned about the Wilmington Ten, the more appalled I have become about the manner in which their convictions were obtained. Ina federal appeals court overturned the convictions in a written decision that highlighted the gross improprieties that occurred during the trial.
Among other things, the court ruled that with regard to the testimony of the prosecution's key witness - upon whose credibility the case depended entirely -- "the conclusion is.
Jervay, Founder of R. Jervay Printers, and T. Taxes Included for NC Residents Address all communications and make all checks and money orders payable to: The Wilmington Journal, P. BoxWilmington, NC I have never speculated about the guilt or innocence of these defendants. None of us currently in the District Attorney's office worked here, and many of us were not even alive, at the time of the trial.
I am aware, however, that there are strong views, from good people on both sides, on the question of whether any or all of the members of the Wilmington 10 conspired to firebomb a grocery store. The best that I can say years later is I am not satisfied that we can know the truth about what happened. Simply saying that we cannot know the truth, how. We must also ask whether the trial was fair. Where there is a flawed process, the outcome must also be questioned. Governor Perdue relied on new evidence and concluded that the trial prosecutor engaged in racial discrimination during jury selection, When jurors are excluded on the basis of race, the defendant and the entire community is denied a fair trial.
No one, especially prosecutors, can justify an outcome where the Constitution has been violated. The new evidence came to light through the work of historians who reviewed the remnants of the case file that my office gave to the Southern Historical Collection at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill nearly five years ago. To be effective, a courthouse must be both transparent and accountable. When no victim or case is harmed by disclosure to third parties, those of us tasked with searching Black people speed hookup raleigh nc obituaries funeral home the truth should be unafraid of outside scrutiny, They truth should not stay buried, even when it is painful.
The Wilmington Ten - nine black males and one white female - were activists who, along with hundreds of black students in the New Hanover County Public School System, protested rampant racial discrimination there in In Februaryafter the arrival of Rev.
Benjamin Chavis to help lead the protests, racial violence erupted, with white supremacist driving through Wilmington's black
Black people speed hookup raleigh nc obituaries funeral home, fatally shooting people and committing arson. A white-owned grocery store in the black community was firebombed, and firemen came under sniper fire. It wasn't until a year later that Rev. Chavis and the others were round up and charged with conspiracy in connection with the firebombing and shootings.
The Ten were falsely convicted, and sentenced to years in prison, some of which they all served. It wouldn't be untilafter years of failed appeals in North Carolina courts, that the three state's witnesses all recanted their testimonies, admitting that they perjured themselves. Amnesty International issued a blistering report declaring the Wilmington Ten "political prisoners of conscience.
And after then NC Gov. Hunt refused to pardon the Ten, but did commute. The appeals court directed North Carolina to either retry the defendants, or dismiss all charges, but the state did nothing for the past Black people speed hookup raleigh nc obituaries funeral home years. Melissa Harris-Perry - caught on, and began editorially pushing for pardoning the Wilmington Ten.
Perdue's pardons legally mean that the accused did not commit the crimes they were convicted of. The governor's decision was roundly hailed. Perdue's historic action today doesn't remove the past forty years of injustice against ten innocent American citizens - North Carolinians who stood up for equal treatment under the law in our public education system," the Wilmington Ten Black people speed hookup raleigh nc obituaries funeral home of Innocence Project, Black people speed hookup raleigh nc obituaries funeral home justice outreach effort of the National.
Newspaper Publishers Association and the Wilmington Journal newspaper, said in a statement. Benjamin Chavis, were indeed innocent of all charges falsely assessed to them by a corrupt prosecutor who, to this day, has not answered for what he did. Perdue called it "naked racism. The legitimacy of our criminal justice system hinges on it operating in a fair and equitable manner, with justice being dispensed based on innocence or guilt - not based on race or other forms of prejudice.
Perdue has "made a mistake. New Hanover County District Attorney Ben David, who originally found the box containing the Stroud files in a closet at his office, and turned them over to historian Duke Prof. Tim Tyson, also issued a statement. For the innocent, the truth will set them free. Where, as here, the process that was in place to search for the truth is determined to be so fundamentally flawed that we cannot know it, the verdict cannot stand the test of time.
My job, as District Attorney, is to make sure that this does not happen again. There was just rampant racism, there was a reluctance to embrace folks of all backgrounds and all ethnicities and all races. It's what we all believe in. If you're going to be prosecuted and convicted, it should be done in a fair and equitable way - where justice will literally mean justice.
Perdue for her courage, not only in the Wilmington Ten pardons, but also her advocacy for victims of forced sterilization, signing the NC Racial Justice Act, vetoing the Legislature's voter
Black people speed hookup raleigh nc obituaries funeral home law, and pushing hard to improve education for poor children statewide.
Furthermore, last month, new evidence was made available to me in the form of handwritten notes from the prosecutor who picked the jury at trial.
These notes show with disturbing clarity the dominant role that racism played in jury selection. The notes reveal that certain white jurors believed to be Ku Klux Klan members were described by the prosecutor as "good" and that at least one African American juror was noted to be an "Uncle Tom type. It is utterly incompatible with basic notions of fairness and with every ideal that North Carolina "Black people speed hookup raleigh nc obituaries funeral home" dear. The legitimacy of our. That did not happen here.
Instead, these convictions were tainted by naked racism and represent an ugly stain on North Carolina's criminal justice system that cannot be allowed to stand any longer. Justice demands that stain finally be removed. A prosecutor's job is to seek justice-nothing more and nothing less. That means we must pursue the truth and ensure a fair process to all concerned.
Where we fail, so must the verdicts we obtain. Today Governor Perdue, through the clemency process, pardoned the Wilmington My office will respect and abide by this decision. The Wilmington Journal cannot accept yard sale and dinner sale announcements as briefs. These are considered advertisements.
Community and religious briefs are designated for public service announcements, which are free and open to the public. All news must be submitted two weeks in advance by Fridays at 5 p. There is no charge for submitting briefs, news and photos. All briefs will run for a maximum of two weeks. Please send news near the event date. Photos and stories may also be emailed to us at wilmjournnews aol.
News, but not photos, may be faxed to us at Photos may be picked up after appearing in the paper. The publisher is not responsible for the return of unsolicited news, pictures or advertising copy unless necessary postage accompanies the copy on a self-addressed envelope. Continued from Page 1 inescapable that [he] perjured himself" and "this fact was bound to be known to the prosecutor.
It also found numerous errors by the trial judge that had the effect of unconstitutionally prejudicing the defendants' ability to receive a fair trial.
Since the trial ended, the prosecution's key witness and two supporting witnesses all independently recanted their testimony incriminating the. As prosecutors, the truth is our only client, For guilty defendants, the truth hurts.
Sometimes the truth remains elusive. The Black Press believes that America can best lead the world away from racial and national antagonism when it accords to every person, regardless of race, color or creed, full human and legal rights. Hating no person in the firm belief that all are hurt as long as anyone is held back. The Wilmington Journal welcomes letters from its readers. The North Carolina NAACP, in association with the New Hanover WILMINGTON JOURNAL [RALEIGH, NC] n what civil leaders I sought the opinions and the advice of many, many people - the .
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