Hate, Hate crime, Tracy L. Bell, Tracy L. Bell - Blog Talk Radio, Tracy L. Bell Host Conversations Of A Sistah

Racist Who Dragged James Byrd to His Death Behind Pickup Truck to Be Executed is Tonight’s Conversation


JASPER, UNITED STATES: John William King (C) grins as he is led from the Jasper County Courthouse after a jury sentenced him to death in his capital murder trial 25 February. King and two other men dragged James Byrd Jr. to death behind a pickup truck in 1998.

21 years ago James Byrd’s gruesome death shocked the nation and devastated his family. Byrd was viciously killed by John William King and two accomplices in Jasper, Texas in 1998., now tonight the ringleader in that murder to set to be executed.

Today Wednesday April 24, King, 44, is scheduled to be put to death by lethal injection in a Texas state prison.

King and his accomplices, Shawn Berry and Lawrence Brewer, encountered Byrd walking home after leaving a friend’s house in the early morning hours on June 7, 1998. Berry, who was driving, was familiar with Byrd from around town. He offered to drive Byrd home.

But instead of taking him home, the men took him to a secluded area on the outskirts of town. There they brutally beat him, and urinated and defecated on him before chaining him by the ankles to the back of their pickup truck.

They then dragged Byrd for nearly 3 miles along a paved road.

King and his accomplices are white. Byrd was Black. His death dominated the nation’s headlines for weeks and led to changes in the way local and federal governments prosecute hate crimes.

The details of Byrd’s murder are horrific and grueling but tonight we’re going to talk about it on “Conversations Of A Sistah“.

We hope you’ll join us in our studios at 6:30 p.m. ESTAll links in the this post will access tonight’s podcast.

Hope to see you on the air but in the meantime sound off here!

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Conversations Of A Sistah, Hate, Hate crime, Host Conversations Of A Sistah, Texas, Tracy L. Bell, Tracy L. Bell - Blog Talk Radio

Remembering James Byrd Jr., Tonight on “Conversations Of A Sistah”


byrd_sq-5a2fdac340a6984ea1924eb60a481ae382bbe80d-s6-c30James Byrd Jr. (pictured here), was murdered in Jasper, Texas on June 7, 1998. He was severely beaten, chained to the back of a pickup truck, then dragged three miles along an asphalt road.  Byrd, who remained conscious throughout most of the ordeal, was killed when his body hit the edge of a culvert, severing his right arm and head. Byrd’s murder is considered one of the worst hate crimes since the civil rights era of the sixties.

Byrd, 49, on a walk home from his parents home in Jasper, accepted a ride from Shawn Berry (age 24), Lawrence Russell Brewer (age 31) and John King (age 23). Berry, who was driving, was acquainted with Byrd from around town. Instead of taking Byrd home, the three men took Byrd to a remote county road out of town, beat him severely, urinated on him and chained him by his ankles to their pickup truck before dragging him for approximately 1.5 miles (2.4 km). The men then dumped Byrd’s mutilated remains in front of an African-American church cemetery.

Joyce_KingJoin me tonight at 6:30 p.m. EST on “Conversations Of A Sistah” via Blog Talk Radio, as I sit down with my special guest, Joyce King, Author of HATE CRIME: The Story of a Dragging in Jasper, Texas.

The critically-acclaimed book landed King on CNN, BET, NPR, USA Radio, Book TV, and The Oprah Winfrey Show.

All “Conversation links” in this post make it possible to access the show.

See you on the air but in the meantime, sound off here!