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On this date in 2001, justice prevailed in the racial murder of four young girls in Alabama. A former Ku Klux Klan member was found guilty of murder in the 1963 Birmingham church bombing that killed four African American girls, one of the most notable crimes of the civil rights era.
The jury found white-American Thomas Blanton Jr., 62, guilty of four counts of murder and sentenced him to four life sentences based on old state law. Blanton was led away in handcuffs. Blanton's attorney said his client would appeal based on the jury's makeup and what he called the "emotional" verdict. "Justice doesn't mean simply to convict, so we all feel good about ourselves," lawyer John Robbins said.
The trial took place in Birmingham. The panel comprised eight whites and four Blacks, only one of them a man. The jurors deliberated for about two and a half hours before deciding.