Alabama Grants Posthumous Pardons To Scottsboro Boys

Source: Brian Lyman, Montgomery (Ala.) Advertiser / USA Today

MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Alabama’s parole board voted Thursday to grant posthumous pardons in the Scottsboro Boys 1931 rape case.

With the vote from the Alabama Board of Pardons and Paroles, three of the Scottsboro Boys received the pardons. Nine black boys were falsely accused of raping two white women on a train in northeast Alabama in 1931.

The board unanimously approved the petition after a short hearing in Montgomery.

All the Scottsboro Boys served jail time, but Haywood Patterson, Charlie Weems and Andy Wright were the last of the accused to have convictions on their records in a case that came to symbolize racial injustice in the Deep South in the 1930s. The three men, along with defendant Clarence Norris, were convicted on rape charges in 1937, after a six-year ordeal that included three trials, the recantation of one of the accusers and two landmark U.S. Supreme Court decisions on legal representation and the racial make-up of jury pools.

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