Frank Morris 1964 murder in Ferriday viewed at Boston conference
posted Thursday, May 3rd, 2007 @ 8:45 am
Janis McDonald, a professor at Syracuse University College of Law, reported in Boston, MA, this weekend on the current efforts to reopen the investigation into the 1964 murder of Ferriday resident Frank Morris.
The conference -- "Solving the Crimes of the Civil Rights Era" -- organized jointly by Harvard Law School and Northeastern School of Law, assembled experts from all over the country to discuss continuing efforts to re-open and prosecute civil rights murders
McDonald alerted the audience to the series of articles published by The Concordia Sentinel on the murder of Morris and the arson of his shoe repair shop on Dec. 10, 1964. The conference attracted an audience of investigators, prosecutors, attorneys, law professors, law students, public officials, civil rights experts and families of victims of other civil rights murders.
A keynote address given by Rita Schwerner Bender highlighted the efforts to bring to justice the killers of her husband and other voter registration workers. Schwerner Bender is the widow of Michael Schwerner who was kidnapped and murdered along with James Chaney and Andrew Goodman in May 1964.
Myrlie Evers-Williams of Jackson MS, spoke to the audience about the events that led to the prosecution of those who participated in the murder of her husband, Medgar Evers, in 1963.
The pending federal prosecution of James Ford Seale of Meadville, MS, for the murders of Charles Moore and Henry Dee was described by Charles Moore's brother, Thomas, and film producer David Ridgen of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Portions of the documentary, "Mississippi Cold Case," portrayed their efforts to reopen the 1964 murders.
The bodies of Moore and Dee were discovered in the Mississippi River by Navy Seal divers searching for Chaney, Goodman and Schwerner that same year. Although the FBI investigated the case upon the discovery of the bodies, local prosecutors in Mississippi dropped the case until the last several years.