Meridian, Miss. Scores of people turned out for a breakfast leading up to the unveiling of the Civil Rights Trail in Meridian Tuesday.
The guest speaker was renowned investigative reporter Jerry Mitchell. Over the last 25-plus years his reports with the Clarion Ledger have led to convictions in at least four criminal cases from the Civil Rights Era. This includes the conviction of Edgar Ray Killen in 2005 for the 1964 murders of three civil rights workers in Neshoba County.
"You know, as a reporter you like to see things happen," says Mitchell. "It's a rare thing that you get to see things that you write about, and the outcomes. Obviously, the thing that has pleased me the most is that the families have gotten to see justice in their lifetimes."
Aside from the 1964 murder case that involved three civil rights workers in Philadelphia, Mitchell's reporting has helped lead to convictions in the Medgar Evers and Vernon Dahmer murders, and the 1963 Birmingham church bombing that killed four young black girls.