Earlier this year I wrote about an American tragedy; a travesty of so-called justice involving two black women: sisters Jamie and Gladys Scott. For those who didn’t see it, in 1993 these two women left a mini-mart near their home in Mississippi. When their car broke down, they hitched a ride from two young men. Later that evening the two men were robbed at gunpoint by three teenagers in another car. The robbers took an estimated $11 from the two young men. No one was hurt. Police accused the Scott sisters of setting the victims up.
The women, with no criminal record, denied any involvement. They were found guilty of armed robbery and were sentenced to double-life sentences in the Central Mississippi Correctional Facility, where they remain today. The young men who admitted their guilt in the crime served 10-month sentences. Though they testified against the Scott sisters, they later recanted their testimony claiming it was given under police pressure.
As I wrote last March, one thing I believe with absolute certainty is that this situation has nothing to do with justice. It has a lot to do with race.
I learned this week that there may be reason for hope in this case. NAACP president Ben Jealous has spoken with Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour on behalf of the Scott sisters. The Mississippi Pardons and Parole Board will consider their case. There have been stories recently on MSNBC and in USA Today. This is apparently the most national publicity the Scott sisters case has received in 16 years.
I pray that the injustice ends soon for Jamie, Gladys, and their family.