WMFE is Central Florida's primary provider of NPR programming on 90.7 FM and Classical Music on 90.7 HD2. Part of the community since 1965, WMFE focuses on providing quality national and local news and programming. We inspire and empower all Central Floridians to discover, grow and engage within and beyond their world.
CLOSEOpt Out: I already like WMFE!

Like us on Facebook!

Support for 90.7 WMFE is provided by

Intersection: Pardoning the Groveland Four


Play Audio

Walter Irvin, Charles Greenlee, and Samuel Shepherd. Photo: Gary Corsair

There’s renewed, bipartisan support for pardoning four black men who were falsely accused of raping a white woman in 1949.

The Groveland Four were Earnest Thomas, Charles Greenlee, Samuel Shepherd and Walter Irvin.

Thomas fled soon after the allegations were made, and was later shot dead by law enforcement. Greenlee was sentenced to life in prison, and Shepherd and Irvin were sentenced to death, but the US Supreme Court threw out Shepherd and Irvin’s convictions.

A retrial was ordered, and Shepherd and Irvin were being transported back to Lake County by sheriff Willis McCall when he shot both men, Shepherd fatally. McCall claimed the two tried to overpower him after he stopped to check a tire, but Irvin said the sheriff shot them in cold blood and later bragged on the police radio that he’d “got rid of them”.

FloridaPolitics.com reporter Scott Powers joined Intersection for a conversation about the importance of a pardon.

“Ultimately what we’re talking about here is the state of Florida acknowledging and dealing with some of the really ugly chapters that did occur during the racist Jim crow era,” said Powers.

Powers said he spoke with the granddaughter of Charles Greenlee –Carol Greenlee– after she heard news that the clemency board would review her grandfather’s case.

“She was just besides herself with joy that this pardon was finally going to appear on the agenda,” said Powers.

Click above to listen to the full segment.


Sign Up For 90.7 WMFE's Newsletter

Catch up on the latest Central Florida news and get updates on programs, events and more.

SUBSCRIBE

WMFE Journalistic Ethics Code | Public Media Code of Integrity

About Emily Lang

Emily Lang

TOP