130325DavidMarch 25, 2013

“I really see us as sharing the goal of making sure this conviction rests on credible and substantial evidence. I’m going to go where the truth leads in this matter.”

– Jon David, district attorney in Brunswick, Columbus and Bladen counties,
responding to a request from the North Carolina Center on Actual Innocence
to review DNA evidence in the case of Joseph Sledge

Mandy Locke’s account in the News & Observer will inspire confidence in neither the competence nor the good faith of North Carolina justice. Sledge, imprisoned 34 years for a double murder, has encountered unspeakable frustrations in his pursuit of exoneration.

Like Willie Grimes, however, Sledge is at last benefiting from a district attorney unimpaired with willful blindness toward his office’s past failures.

If the Edenton Seven are ever able to achieve true exoneration from the state, it likely won’t be with the acquiescence of the prosecutors, much less their assistance.