NAACP Branch Sues Curtis Flowers Prosecutor

GREENVILLE, MS (Ben Caxton) — Four black voters and a Mississippi NAACP branch have filed a lawsuit in Federal Court in Greenville against Curtis Flowers prosecutor, District Attorney Doug Evans. The suit asks U.S. District Judge Debra Brown to permanently order Evans and his assistants to stop using peremptory challenges to remove African American jurors because of their race. The lawsuit stems from a recent decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that overturned the murder conviction of Curtis Flowers citing racial bias in jury selection. Flowers has been tried six times by Evans in connection with a 1996 shooting that killed four people, execution-style, in a Winona, Mississippi furniture store. The NAACP says an analysis showed Evans used peremptory strikes to remove over 50% of potential black jurors over that time, compared to just 11% of potential white jurors. In one of the Flowers trials, Evans used all 15 of his strikes to prevent black jurors from being seated at trial. The plaintiffs in the lawsuit include the Attala County branch of the NAACP, former NAACP state president Charles Hampton and Sharon Young who was struck from the jury by prosecutors in the 2004 trial of Flowers.

 


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