Measure to Reopen Raced-Based Murders Passes Senate

Jul 15, 2016

A law designed to extend federal and state reviews of "cold cases" of racially motivated killings during the civil rights era is one step closer to being renewed.

A unanimous Senate voted Thursday evening to permanently renew a 2007 law that calls for a full accounting of race-based murders, many of which had been closed for decades.

More than 100 cases from the 1960s and earlier have been checked out, with one conviction. But new racially suspicious murders have been identified for investigation.

North Carolina GOP Sen. Richard Burr and Missouri Democrat Claire McCaskill sponsored the measure, which now heads to the House.

The bill is named after Emmett Till, a 14-year-old black boy murdered in 1955 after whistling at a white woman.