April 25, 2001 |
Racial hatred and a desire to halt the civil rights movement led a Ku Klux Klansman to bomb a Birmingham church in 1963, killing four black girls, a federal prosecutor said on the opening day of the historic murder trial. Thomas Blanton Jr.'s "hatred and hostility toward African Americans" provided the 62-year-old defendant with a motive to bomb the 16th Street Baptist Church, U.S. Atty. Doug Jones told a Birmingham court.
April 14, 2001 |
A judge sentenced a 16-year-old girl to life in prison without parole Friday for murdering her grandfather and aunt and trying to kill her grandmother and sister. Ashley Jones was convicted in March. She could not be sentenced to death because she was 14 at the time of the 1999 killings. Jones' 78-year-old grandfather, Deroy C. Nalls, died after being shot, stabbed and set afire. Her aunt, Millie Nalls, 30, was shot and stabbed to death.
December 5, 2000 |
A woman was sentenced to 13 years in prison Monday for the "road rage" shooting death of another motorist on a highway exit ramp. Shirley Henson, 41, was convicted of manslaughter for killing Gena Foster, 34. Prosecutors said Henson tailgated Foster for several miles on Interstate 65 as the two women drove from work to their homes in suburban Birmingham in 1999.
May 18, 2000 |
Decades after they were named as suspects, two former Ku Klux Klansmen have been charged with murder in the infamous 1963 bombing of a black Birmingham, Ala., church, one of the most hideous crimes of the civil rights era. Nearly 37 years have passed since a dynamite bomb rocked the landmark 16th Street Baptist Church, killing four young girls in a basement lounge.
August 6, 1999 |
A former construction worker accused of helping kill a gay man, allegedly because of an unwanted sexual advance, was convicted Thursday of capital murder and sentenced to life without parole. Charles M. Butler Jr., 21, was convicted in the slaying of Billy Jack Gaither, 39, who had his throat slashed and was beaten to death. His body then was burned on a pile of old tires. The victim's father asked that Butler not be sentenced to death.
August 5, 1999 |
A skinhead who pleaded guilty to killing a gay man testified in Rockford, Ala., that his co-defendant did not strike the fatal blows but joined him in a scheme to lure the victim to a remote area with the promise of sex. Steven Eric Mullins, 25, has pleaded guilty to capital murder in the Feb. 19 death of Billy Jack Gaither, 39, who was beaten with an ax handle and whose throat was cut. Charles M. Butler Jr.