Honor the day by hearing these ominous and generally unknown points of evidence and circumstance being entered into the record during the King family’s 1999 civil finding of wrongful death for the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
The clip presents only an 8 1/2 minute portion of attorney William Pepper’s closing summation of evidence to the jury – given before they delivered a verdict against the defendant, Loyd Jowers. All ten clips are available on YouTube.
Loyd Jowers? Funny I don’t remember any fuss over this on TV at the time. In fact I am ashamed to admit that I have been walking around for over 12 years having no idea how much evidence this Memphis jury heard; evidence that not only pointed to shooters not named James Earl Ray, but also implicated local, state, and federal law enforcement personnel in complicity with shooters not named James Earl Ray.
At least we now see how important it was for a lot of people that James Earl Ray never got a jury trial. It should make us think twice whenever an alleged assassin does not go to trial – whether he is shot dead at the scene or while in custody, or maybe is declared mentally insane and unable to stand trial. In Ray’s case it appears he was just allowed to run – I’m guessing someone gave him tickets to a place where an accident could be arranged for him. Except that on the way to the accident he was snared at a checkpoint that was out of their control – Heathrow Airport – and returned to them. Awkward moment!
After the British government expedited the lone gunman back to the states, normal preparations for his defense where begun. But these preparations were brought to an end quickly by Texas attorney Percy Foreman, who showed up uninvited and convinced Ray to fire his legal team, telling him that he could get him off. Then, on the day before scheduled arraignment with his fancy new attorney, Ray was very suddenly told by him that he must plead guilty or face the electric chair. When Ray discovered that he had not been allowed to say anything on his own behalf during the plea bargain, he recanted his guilty plea, and spent the rest of his life in prison requesting a trial.
At least the King family’s civil trial 30 years later has cleared Ray’s name of all Federal charges except the purchase of a rifle alleged to be the murder weapon (a rifle with a scope that had never been ‘sighted in’ and arguably was never fired in the direction of the Lorraine Motel).