Mississippi murder case re-opened after several decades
William Prather was shot by a group of white teens on Halloween night in Corinth, Miss., in 1959. Now, "the U.S. Justice Department says it has referred Prather's killing to the state of Mississippi "for potential prosecution," according to the Slate.
However, "It's unclear whether a district attorney will pursue charges against any aging defendant in a decades-old case where witnesses' memories may be fading and some pieces of evidence, including the truck and the shotgun, have disappeared."
The incident began as eight teens were cruising through what at the time was an all-black neighborhood and were seen by witnesses throwing fire crackers at black teens.
The black teens retaliated by throwing rocks back at their pickup truck. This angered the white teens, so they left the black neighborhood and returned with a shotgun. Jerry Darnell Glidewell proceeded to shoot Prather as the group returned to the black neighborhood. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Prather was innocent: reports stated he was not one of those who was throwing rocks at the pickup truck.
Glidewell was charged with the murder but pleaded to manslaughter and served less than a year in prison. The other six were sent to youth court and ended up with probation. The 18-year-old of the group got off scot-free.