Dispute over Winston-Salem council’s minutes keeps public in the dark

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FILE PHOTO: Joshua Mack, 21, holds a life-size poster of Kalvin Michael Smith during a rally in Raleigh. (Journal photo by Bertrand M Gutierrez.)

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — More than three years ago, some members of the Winston-Salem City Council who appeared in favor of the city supporting Kalvin Michael Smith’s federal appeal suddenly changed their minds after two closed-door meetings, according to the Winston-Salem Journal.

The public still doesn’t know why.

And the public won’t know for a considerable amount of time because of attorney-client privilege, according to City Attorney Angela Carmon. That attorney-client privilege holds, even though Smith’s federal appeals have all been denied.

Smith, 43, is serving up to 29 years in prison for the 1995 beating of Jill Marker, an assistant manager at the Silk Plant Forest store. The attack left Marker with severe brain trauma. She now lives in Ohio under 24-hour care.

Smith has maintained his innocence, and the Winston-Salem Journal published a 2004 series of stories that raised questions about the police investigation and prosecution. Smith’s case is the most prominent allegation of wrongful conviction since Darryl Hunt was exonerated in 2004 for the 1984 murder of Deborah Sykes.

Read full story: The Winston-Salem Journal

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