Thomas E. Blanton Jr., 86, was convicted in 2001 for the murder of four black girls after bombing the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, AL in 1963. The known member of the Ku Klux Klan will be eligible for parole before the Alabama Board of Pardons and Paroles this August, according to Alabama.com.
However, Doug Jones, the former U.S. Attorney who prosecuted Blanton, doesn’t think the hearing will work in his favor.
“He has shown no remorse. He’s shown no acceptance of responsibility,” Jones said. “He has not reached out to the families or the community to show acceptance of responsibility. I think that’s an important part of parole consideration and it’s completely lacking in this case.”
Jones plans to be in attendance at the hearing, as well as representatives of the families of the four girls who was killed, to point out the lack of sympathy and remorse Blanton has expressed.
Out of the three men that were convicted for the crime years after it was committed, Blanton is the only one still living. Robert Chambliss was convicted in 1977 and Bobby Frank Cherry was convicted in 2002. Herman Cash, a fourth suspect, died in 1994 before ever going to trial.
Photo Credit: Alabama Department of Corrections