Hinton released, Charter Schools, Alabama Wildflower Society needs help

Apr 3, 2015

A man who spent nearly 30 years on Alabama's death row has been freed following a decades-long fight to prove his innocence.

Fifty-eight-year-old Anthony Ray Hinton was released Friday morning from an Alabama prison. He hugged family members as he walked out, saying, "Thank you Jesus."

Hinton was convicted of the 1985 murders of two Birmingham fast-food restaurant managers. Crime scene bullets were the only evidence linking Hinton to the slayings.

However, prosecutors said new testing failed to show any of the bullets came from a revolver found in Hinton's home, or even the same gun.

Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court sent the case back for a new trial. Prosecutors moved to dismiss the charges following the testing.

Charter schools are now legal in Alabama. Now, the next question is when they will be implemented.

Alabama Governor Robert Bentley made Alabama the forty third state in the Union to allow the non-traditional public schools. Even though the bill passed the Republican-controlled legislature without much issue, there were and are some vocal opponents of the charter school measure. One popular critique is that the new schools will pull money away from already underfunded traditional public schools.

But Todd Ziebarth, vice president of the National Alliance for Public Schools, says it’s not quite that simple.

“Yes, I think if you’re a school and you lose ten kids to a public charter school, then you will lose the resources that those kids would generate. You also don’t have the requirement to now educate those kids and you have a lot of your costs reduced there as well.”

If you’d like to turn today’s forecasted April showers into May flowers, the Alabama Wildflower Society wants to help. The group is holding its annual plant sale tomorrow in the courtyard of the Kentuck Art Gallery near Tuscaloosa.

The proceeds will go to help the University of Alabama Arboretum, the Cahaba Lily Society, and scholarships for college botany students. Wildflower

Society President Rich Cobb says today rainy forecast should get better tomorrow…

“On Saturday, for the public, it’s going to be drier. I think it’ll be a good day for a sale. It’s really good that it’ll be raining while we’re setting up, cause the plants will get watered and we won’t have to baby them.”

Cobb says most of the plant will sell in the two to three dollar range, with some as low as fifty cents.