Miss. Judge Delivers Lesson to Men Sentenced in ‘Jim Crow-Style Lynching’

Judge Carlton Reeve
Judge Carlton Reeve

A federal District Court judge in Mississippi delivered a powerful lesson last week to two men sentenced in the brutal 2011 death of a 49-year-old auto-plant worker, which occurred after the two men decided to “go [f—k] with some [n—gers],” according to Raw Story, which cites various media reports.

Three of the defendants—Deryl Dedmon, Dylan Butler and John Rice—each pleaded guilty in March 2012 to one count of conspiracy and one count of committing a hate crime, according to Vox. They were sentenced Tuesday by U.S. District Court Judge Carlton Reeves, the report says.

Reeves, who was appointed by President Obama in 2010, is the second African-American federal judge to serve in Mississippi, Vox notes, saying, “He used his remarks at the sentencing hearing to give an unflinching analysis of the tragedy and the long history of racism—especially in that state—that inspired it.”


The blog Breach of Peace published Reeves’ entire statement, which includes Reeves analysis of Mississippi’s “infatuation with lynchings,” Vox writes. Seven others defendants are awaiting sentencing, the report notes.

“The simple fact is that what turned these children into criminal defendants was their joint decision to act on racial hatred,” the judge says in part. “In the eyes of these defendants [and their coconspirators], the victims were doomed at birth … their genetic makeup made them targets.”

Read the entire statement at Breach of Peace.

Read more at Raw Story and Vox.

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