Marc Vietor gives a riveting performance of Paul Alexander’s vivid account of a brutal crime that occurred in the quaint small town of Winona, Mississippi, and the aftermath. In 1996, four people were shot dead at a furniture shop; three of the victims were Caucasian. Though there was no substantive evidence, the prime suspect was Curtis Flowers, an African-American man who had worked at the store for three days. He had no prior criminal record, but has since endured six trials for murder. Over the years, he has maintained his innocence, but he now sits on death row. This is a powerful story about race, class, and the criminal justice system in America.
Can a person be tried more than once for the same crime in the United States? Under usual circumstances, no. But in Mississippi, one man was tried six times for the same brutal crime—and his ordeal still hasn’t ended.
One July morning in 1996, three people were discovered dead and one at death’s door in a furniture store in Winona, Mississippi. Three of the victims were white—including the store owner. That same day, a black man, Curtis Flowers, was identified as the prime suspect.Flowers had worked at the store for three days and had quit under questionable circumstances. But almost no substantive evidence linked him to the crime. A devout Christian and gospel singer, Flowers had no prior criminal record and the barest of motives. Caught between a relentless Mississippi prosecutor and the fury of both African-American and white communities in his town, Flowers has endured six separate trials over more than a decade in a case that remains undecided.