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Monday, March 3, 2008

West Virginia, Megan Williams, Rape, Sexual Assualt and Battery, and Justice for a Black Woman and Black Women ?? Really ???

The Politics of color aroused justice in West Virginia

Williams family says sentences too light, calls for protest march



Shaya tayefe Mohajer a writer with the Associated Press says, The parents of a black woman who was allegedly tortured by six white men and women in Logan County are lashing out at the county's prosecutor for not demanding harsher penalties. Matthew and Carmen Williams held a news conference Wednesday at the First Baptist Church in Charleston to voice their frustration with Logan County Prosecutor Brian Abraham."We were OK with the first two deals that (Abraham) made with Alisha Burton and George Messer, but then he started getting up to plea deals with Karen Burton and Frankie Brewster,'' said Carmen Williams, referring to four of the defendants. "I think they should have gotten, to be honest, life in prison. We were very dissatisfied.''

Her 20-year-old daughter Megan Williams was allegedly held captive at Brewster's trailer in Big Creek for days last summer, forced to eat feces, sexually assaulted and stabbed. Megan Williams was rescued Sept. 8 after an anonymous caller alerted deputies. Karen Burton, her daughter Alisha Burton, Brewster and Messer all were initially charged with kidnapping, which carries a maximum life sentence. Alisha Burton and Messer each pleaded guilty to kidnapping and assault but received 10-year sentences. Karen Burton and Brewster pleaded guilty to lesser charges.

"To me, what's going on here is a slap in Megan's face. Not mine, but Megan's. They promised her one thing, and then destroyed it,'' Matthew Williams said before breaking down into tears and leaving the podium. Abraham said all six defendants were given identical charges before the investigation was complete, and that those charges were never intended to stand throughout the criminal process.

"Each defendant will be held accountable for his or her personal actions in the case,'' said Abraham. "I have and will base all of my decisions on the evidence that the investigation has revealed.''

The Williams family said the 49-year-old Brewster's sentence could be especially light. Brewster pleaded guilty to second-degree sexual assault, which carries a 10- to 25-year prison term. Her sentencing hearing is scheduled for March 12. Karen Burton, 46, of Chapmanville, pleaded guilty to malicious wounding, assault and violating Williams' civil rights. If served consecutively, the charges could result in 30 years in prison. Karen Burton was the only defendant charged with a hate crime. Burton's sentencing is set for March 3 at the Logan County Courthouse. The Williams family urged protesters to attend that hearing. They plan to organize a car pool to depart from First Baptist Church at 8 a.m. that day. More HERE

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