|Courtesy of the (SC) State|
George Stinney, Jr. and Sister (left)
Chip Finney, 3rd Cir. (SC) Solicitor (right)
Coverage of the Stinney saga can be found in The State (SC) and in the N.Y. Times. The case also has spawned an award-winning, true-crime novel, Carolina Skeletons, by David Stout, formerly of the N.Y. Times. For a thoughtful, multi-part retrospective about his discovery of Stinney and the local context in which the crime, investigation, and execution occurred, see Stout's discussions here, here, here, and here. Here is an excerpt from Part 1 of the series:
As a journalist, I’d always been drawn to criminal justice issues, especially capital punishment. ... I’ve always favored the death penalty for truly horrible crimes. But should the state put a killer to death if he isn’t old enough to live on his own, or vote, or buy a beer? ...
Quickly, probably too quickly, I formed an opinion. Since George Stinney was black, and the little girls were white, he was doomed from the start. He was lucky to have died from the electric current rather than strangling at the end of a rope thrown over a tree limb by a lynch mob in the bigoted, rebel-haunted South Carolina of 1944.