History

N.C. Governor Pardons 10 Wrongly Convicted in 40-Year-Old Bombing

Significant misconduct in racially-charged case

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Outgoing North Carolina Gov. Beverly Perdue issued pardons Monday to the Wilmington 10, a group wrongly convicted 40 years ago in a notorious Civil Rights-era prosecution that led to accusations of the state holding political prisoners.

Perdue issued pardons of innocence Monday for the nine black men and one white woman who combined were sentenced to nearly 300 years in prison for the 1971 firebombing of a Wilmington grocery store after police shot a black teenager.

The pardon means the state no longer thinks the 10 — four of whom have since died — committed a crime.