This op-ed essay was first published in The Advocate on Friday, July 24th.
Time to Restore Justice for Louisianans Convicted by Split Juries
by Mercedes Montagnes and Jamila Johnson
As the nation moves to remove the monuments to racism throughout the South, consider the largest monument of all: hundreds of people locked inside prisons throughout Louisiana without the unanimous consent of a jury.
One of Louisiana’s Jim Crow laws allowed nonunanimous juries to disenfranchise black jurors. The practice was codified at an 1898 constitutional convention with the explicit purpose “to establish the supremacy of the white race in the state.”