Family of South Carolina Boy Put to Death Seeks Exoneration 70 Years Later

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tags: segregation, South Carolina




SUMTER, S.C. — After South Carolina electrocuted George J. Stinney Jr. in 1944, his family buried his burned, 14-year-old body in an unmarked grave in the hopes the anonymity would allow him to rest in peace.

But on two mornings this week, nearly 70 years after the electrocution that ultimately made Mr. Stinney, a black teenager in the segregated South, the youngest person executed in the United States in the 20th century, lawyers and spectators crowded into a courtroom with a very different agenda: shedding enough light on the case to try to clear Mr. Stinney’s name.

“When I looked at the case and what was there and studied it, it was appalling,” said Miller W. Shealy Jr., one of the lawyers who agreed to help the Stinney family in its quest for a new trial or a voided verdict. He added that the case played out in the “old South Carolina,” but said, “It’s still appalling.”...




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