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Associated Press

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — Ten North Carolina youths sent to prison in the 1970s who became known as the Wilmington 10 are seeking pardons of innocence from Gov. Bev Perdue before she leaves office this year.

The seven survivors and relatives of three dead members of the group convicted after a grocery store burned during a 1971 race riot filed petitions Thursday with Perdue’s office.

Wilmington 10 leader Benjamin Chavis and nine others were freed when a federal appeals court overturned their convictions in 1980. Chavis later became executive director of the NAACP. He says North Carolina’s politics and history 40 years after their convictions make this the right time to seek pardons.

Perdue is not seeking re-election this year. Her spokeswoman says the petitions will get full and fair consideration.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comment on this Story

  • bbw

    who cares if the governor doesnt pardon them,they made history! and they are heroes in the black community everywhere,and that goes to show you we will never back down again! its not the 1800’s anymore. god dont like ugly. sorry but if ur not african american this post is not 4u. Wilmington 10 4ever!

  • GuestReality

    They’re the black community’s heroes??? That explains a lot.

  • Guest2020

    If the black community has no one better than murderous thugs to look up to, then I feel sorry for you.

  • Grand Ole Party

    You’re right, it’s not the 1800’s anymore. Enough with the excuses. You nor anyone you have ever known was a slave. Get over it already. African American? I guess if you are not proud to be black then it fits. Myself, I have no issues with my color, or lack thereof. I don’t expect or want anyone to call me Irish American. Exactly what ‘Change is coming”? Are you going to stop whining about events that took place years ago? Sorry but if you’re not a fed up white American, this post is not for you.

  • nchilltopper

    Might as well Pardon all the Black Panthers as well, they all seem to be convicted felons. If I fire-bombed a black owned store there would be NO chance I would be a free man again in my lifetime, let alone be pardoned.

  • SlickRod09

    That is a pretty biased comment.

  • tweety

    we all have a right to our opinions do a little research on both before you judge them not want the FBI reports had to say but try to find people that were there with the ten or the original black panther party.

  • GuestOne

    The KKK meeting on Tuesday night at 9:00 has changed location. It will now be held at your house. Bring your own sheet….

  • Guest 4545

    Perdue can pardon them but that doesn’t mean they didn’t do it. If you asked OJ he’d tell you he didn’t kill anybody.
    Perdue can do what she wants but the Wilmington 10 know what they did. Just living the lie!

  • burgerboy

    Typical libber rubbish from purdue chicken. She knows she’s done such a lousy job that she’s not even running next term, and thus has nothing to lose, so plan on seeing more foolishness like this in the future.

  • Guest2020

    The idiot we have for governor probably will pardon the criminals just like that idiot Saffo apologized to them.. They got off on a technicality. They are not innocent.

  • Beach Bum

    Biased nothing. It is the truth. It is became painfully obvious, when Obama was elected into office, the only people in America that can be racist or prejudice are white people.

    Since none of them were sent to jail, why are they seeking pardons? That, in my opinion, is an admission of guilt and they should be penalized for it.

    I will make my decision on the evidence collected from the authorities, because they are the authorities for a reason, and not from some one who is not, but has an axe to grind.

    Since white people are now the minorites, everyone cool with a united white people college fund and repealing affirmative action?

    Yeah, I didn’t think so.

  • Guest77

    They did spend time in the penitentiary.If they get pardened they will recieve money for every YEAR they was locked up. White people are NOT the minority YET. In my opinion you are racist. I could be wrong, but I bet not as wrong as yours was.

  • tweety

    Hey beach bum surf up i see.Go for what you know.You are probably one of those that think the native americans gave up their land just because and that slavery was a myth.Prejudice comes in all shapes and sizes now racist and racism are a whole different animal look it up in webster and it is called scholarships and in the last 30 years years who has said anything about affirmative action.Dust off the old history books and do a little reading better yet use google.

  • Beach Bum


    Why do you think there are all these scholarships you are talking about…


    It is clearly reverse racism at best.

  • Beach Bum


    You are right. I am racist and I am prejudice. I have absoultely no business in Creekwood as much as the common folk of Creekwood have at my house. That is just common sense. So if that makes me racist and prejudice, fine by me. I will stay on my side of the tracks and mind my business. But people like you, who are meddlesome and clearly not busy enough, won’t let people be or mind their own business. Always got to make mountains out of mole hills.

    Why wouldn’t segregation work? Keeps things uniformal, eliminates confusion and there is no individuality.

    And for the record, there is not one person in the United States of America who was alive when we were settling the colonies or when slavery was a factor. I do, however, take issue with someone getting away with domestic terrorism, no matter what their ideas or cause may or may not of been. If they are so righteous, why the rioting and destroying of property? That is just brilliant leadership and thinking in my opinion. And now, they want repirations for being common day terrorist or thugs?

    Screw that.

  • Guest5555555

    Oh, yeah. Like we’re gonna trust ANYTHING the Black Panther Party has to say. The organization’s leaders supported socialist and communist (mainly Maoist) doctrines. Nothing but a bunch of low-life, pro-violence losers.

  • Grand Ole Party

    As if you were there with them. Please. Give the liberal B.S. a break once in awhile. While you are taking that break, learn a little grammar.

  • tweety

    grand have you passed a mirror lately sound like you would have been down with slavery you wouldn’t be somewhat racist.Grammar get real yours is not all that perfect.oh superior one.

  • Grand Ole Party

    I pass a mirror once in awhile. No issues with the image staring back at me either. Exactly what did I post that makes me sound like I am “down with slavery” haha. I can’t wait to hear this one. But really you have no clue what you are talking about do you? Hell you have yet to understand the word thug. No my grammar is not even close to perfect, however my posts are understandable. I have to read yours three or four times to understand what the hell you are trying to say.

  • tweety

    Grand your comments sound so angry.Get over what that slavery was real that dogs were treated better get over the fact that as early as the 1960’s blacks were still consider to be less than.Proud of being an american d@@m right, fought and died for this country d@@m right forget about american history never what group of people forget there history or there hertiage.Fed up sure,fed up with stupidity.But of course you wouldn’t understand.

  • Grand Ole Party

    News flash genius….The sixties are long over with. Blacks, Whites, Hispanics, Asians, etc. etc. all have equal rights. That means the same opportunity to receive an equal education, why the hell did you not take advantage of it? Re-read your post and see if you can see anything wrong with it. If not please let me know and I will point it out for you. Try again Twitty, you can’t seem to get anything right.

  • tweety12

    Grand re-read uneducated please.Graduated from one the best colleges in NC.In three an a half years.Served 20 years in the military(E7)My post had nothing to do with education.But when you are angry you see what you want to see let me give you a little insight into what i do.Your thoughts and words are somewhat abnormal.(emotion,thought and behavior)one day i might see you in class genius without a doubt.


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