Wilmington 10 makes ‘closing argument’ for pardons

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Submitted: Wed, 12/26/2012 - 7:45pm
Updated: Thu, 12/27/2012 - 12:01am

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The surviving members of the Wilmington 10 are making one final push for pardons before Gov. Bev Perdue leaves office next week.

The living members are scheduled to deliver more than 130,000 petition signatures from their Change.org national campaign to a representative of Perdue’s State Capitol Office tomorrow at 9 a.m. This will be the last such delivery before Perdue makes her decision on whether to grant pardons to the group convicted of arson in 1971 only to have the conviction overturned years later.

Organizers say tomorrow will be the Wilmington 10’s “closing argument” to gain pardons.

A month ago, Wilmington Ten member Willie Earl Vereen led a delegation of supporters from Wilmington when he delivered more than 14,000 petition signatures from the NAACP, the Wilmington Journal newspaper and Change.org to Mark Davis, Gov. Perdue’s General Counsel, at the capitol.

This time, Dr. Benjamin Chavis, leader of the Wilmington Ten, will be joined by Wilmington Ten members Vereen, James McKoy and Marvin Patrick; family members of deceased Wilmington Ten members Anne Shepard, Jerry Jacobs, William Joe Wright and Connie Tindall; Wilmington Ten attorneys Irving Joyner and James Ferguson, and a large delegation of supporters from Wilmington, when Dr. Chavis delivers their second batch of signatures.


  • The Natural says:

    I’d just like to know why the Klan members that caused all this to happen didn’t make it to trial. And blaming Ben Chavis for downtown? I guess all black folks are at fault for downtown not being safe anymore…..I guess white people don’t commit crime. Give me a break. Some of you, not all of you, are bigots hiding behind a keyboard.

  • PublicAvenger says:

    If ten white people got together, and burned down a black person’s business, this would be a ‘Hate Crime’. And the NAACP would be rightfully speaking against these criminals. I thought the NAACP was against Hate Crimes, not for them.

  • Guest 211 says:


  • SurfCityTom says:

    just a desire to have you give a direct answer to a direct question.

    By the way, what is ROWP?

  • tweety11 says:

    spin-off of the Klan

  • tweety11 says:

    Tom never said your racial background had anything to do with this.The comment is just that.Now for the last comment Kill them all and let God sort it out.Is this your thinking

  • SurfCityTom says:

    you very clearly referred to me as white as though that is relevant.

    You have yet to give a clear answer as to why the Gaurd’s presence had any bearing on their guilt or innocence. It’s real simple; they either did the deed or they did not.

    And no, my thinking was not that the Gaurd should have locked and loaded their weapons and killed them. I noted what could have happened had the Gaurd been present. Big difference.

    Quit trying to put words into my posts. Answer the question if that is at all possible. Did they or did they not do the deed?

  • SurfCityTom says:

    what relevance does the location of the National Gaurd have to do with the guilt or innocence of the infamous 10? Just another effort to sow confusion?

  • tweety11 says:

    Revelence the location of the Gaurd is as followed,The gaurd was set up at all the hot spots,tanks rolling through so were was all these automatic rifles and what not.Like i said if they are going to tell it tell it right.

  • SurfCityTom says:

    improve your reading skills and then answer the question.

    The presence or absence of the Naional Gaurd has no bearing on the guilt or innocence of the Notorious 10.

    They either did the deed or they did not.

  • tweety11 says:

    I know that you don’t understand or refuse to see.Try putting the two comments together and you might get a clue,or do you believe since you are White you must be right???????Tom

  • tweety11 says:

    No the N.G. does not have in bearing on there innocence.You might have to go back to the original post(not mine,the one i replied to)are they guilty no.Standing up for injustice yes.Maybe you should find the leaders of the R.O.W.P and ask them if they had anything to do with the bombing of Mike’s grocery store.It sounds like you have a complex………..Tom

  • SurfCityTom says:

    you again fail to answer the question. My racial background has nothing at all to do with this.

    Either they did the deed or they did not. It’s that simple.

    Had the Gaurd been armed and on the scene, they might have shot all 10 which would have eliminated this entire debate.

  • Gramps1935 says:

    The Wilmington Ten were clearly proven guilty, by the evidence. You can use this same argument to free the Thug Four, who murdered that CFCC student, in cold blood, two weeks ago……

    Because the magistrate, had a wife, who had a cousin, who came from Johnston County, and knew the victim’s family, he should not have been able to render the decision, to find ‘Probable Cause’. Therefore there is no Probable Cause, and the Thug Four are also “Not Guilty”, and should be given a million dollars each, in restuition. And if you say “No”, WE will call YOU the “Racist”.

    It was always established, by the Evidence, they were “Guilty”. It was a politically-correct ‘Technicality’ that overturned the convictions, a few years later.

  • tweety11 says:

    For the record it wasn’t there church.Let me ask you this question is it possible that the R.O.W.P set Mikes store on fire.The way that they tried to blow up the wilmington journal.Ask them there should be a few still here.

  • Jdog2012 says:

    Poor Tweety, You confused soul… If they were not guilty, then why were they held up in their church a few houses down from a burning store. If your neighbors house was on fire, would you lock the door and stay inside? Or would you go and checkout the situation?

  • Guest 211 says:


  • Guest6858 says:

    Yes, just go away…especially you Chavis. Our city is the way it is now because of YOU! Like a slow growing cancer. You contribute nothing and take everything. It’s because of you no one feels safe downtown anymore. May you rot!!!

  • snopdog18 says:

    The Wilmington 10 were guilty and remain guilty of the crimes they were charged with. I lived thru their attacks on one and all. If you were white driving down Oleander Drive in front of the projects or driving down Castle St where they had fortified a building with automatic rifles and steel plating on the inside of the walls you were placing your life in Gods hands. Tell the owners of Lums or Mike’s grocery that they were innocent. tell the ladies that had their windows shot out of their cars in the Wilmington area.The press and the liberals wants to forgive them which is ok but to pardom them of these crimes would make our laws a laughing stock of the entire world.

  • GuestReality says:

    Don’t forget about the bricks they threw at car windows either. A few people got injured in those attacks on Dawson Street.

  • tweety11 says:

    You tell that lie to somebody else.Yes Mike’s grocery did burn down.Buildings fortified driving down Oleander Drive What bold face lie .Were was the national gaurd when all this was going on?If you are going to tell at less tell it right.

  • Susan Martiin says:

    I was there in 1971 and a lot was happening to both sides white and black I am white I dont think that the streets were lined with guns as some have said I belive there was stress put on both sides alot by ovtr agressive police there was so many lies told how can anyone belive they burned the store maybe it happened by chance or may be some did it to frame them that is what I think happened!! My mother was Anne Sheppard I know she wanted fairness for black and white she saw progress over the years but freedom is a heavy price they should be pardoned for crimes they did not do.God know this and has welcomed some set them free in spirit we have come a long way

  • SurfCityTom says:

    will they get the message if Smiley does not issue a pardon? She’s leaving office; not worried about another election campaign or wooing voters.

    Should she choose not to issue it, that should send a loud and clear message.

  • who new says:


    seems the starnewsonline thinks it’s the right thing to do. Read the last line. I don’t know how they would know, but that’s what I read.

  • Guest3 says:

    so the last line of the story reads “The governor should issue the pardon because it is the right thing to do.”
    What a lod of caca.
    Once again, Im embaressed to be a Wilmingtoinain.

  • taxpayer says:

    “I was there in 1971 and a lot was happening to both sides white and black I am white I dont think that the streets were lined with guns as some have said I belive there was stress put on both sides alot by ovtr agressive police there was so many lies told how can anyone belive they burned the store maybe it happened by chance or may be some did it to frame them that is what I think happened!!”

    >On the bottom row of keys on your computer…just to the left of the “shift” key are two keys you should learn to use. The “,” and “.” keys.

  • Guest2020 says:

    I wouldn’t put it past our idiot governor to pardon these thugs.

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