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Politics / Issues

Charges against the 'Groveland Four' could be dropped 70 years later

Archive photo of Groveland Four
State Library and Archives of Florida
/
AP
(From left) Lake County, Fla., Sheriff Willis McCall and an unidentified man stand next to Walter Irvin, Samuel Shepherd and Charles Greenlee. The three were accused of rape in 1949, along with a fourth man. They were pardoned by Gov. DeSantis.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and the state's Cabinet granted posthumous pardons to the men in 2019.

A local prosecutor has filed a motion to clear the names of four African American men who were wrongly accused of raping a white woman more than seven decades ago.

Prosecutor Bill Gladson filed a motion on Monday to dismiss the indictments of Ernest Thomas and Samuel Shepherd and to set aside the judgments and sentences of Charles Greenlee and Walter Irvin.

The motion filed in state court in Ocala seeks to correct the record with new evidence in the case of the young men known as the “Groveland Four."

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and the state's Cabinet granted posthumous pardons to the men in 2019.

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