LYNCHERS FREE; “NO EVIDENCE”: 5 Negroes, However, Indicted In Ala.

Source Type: Newspaper
Publisher: Norfolk Journal & Guide
Place of publication: Norfolk, VA
Date of publication: August 1930

Although they termed the Fourth of July disorders at Emele, in which four Negroes were lynched, as “deplorable,” the grand jury investigating the tragedy said it did not have sufficient evidence to re-turn indictments against any white persons involved in the killings, but it did return indictments against five members of the Robertson family con-nected with the outbreaks, charging three of them with murder.

Tom Robertson was put in Kilby Prison Friday night to go on trial in October for murder, while two of his sons, Ollis (?) and John, still were sought on murder charges in the slaying of Grover Boyd, white storekeeper, at Emele, July 4.

It was the slaying of Boyd, who got into an argument with Esau Robert-son over a $4 automobile battery, and the subsequent search for Tom Robert-son and his sons that resulted in the death of Charlie Marrs, white posse-man, and the lynching of Tom’s broth-er, John Newton Robertson, Esau Rob-ertson and two other Negroes, one unidentified man and a woman.

The investigation ordered by Govern-or Bibb Graves of county officialdom, following the lynching, has resulted in the imprisonment of a county official for embezzlement and the wholesale of resignation of others who were under fire. While it was not stated that these men were quizzed because of their direct connection with the lynch-ing, it is understood that the Governor is far from satisfied with their manner of enforcing the law.